Thursday, April 17, 2008

What I will Miss Most About Biola #28

Well, Josh was a little worried today that I wouldn't have enough days to get through my series, so I wanted to put another post up ASAP to calm his nerves. ;)
So, here we go, #28 = Clyde Cook

Now, originally, I was going to say that I was going to miss Clyde because he was just always around. You would see him in the cafe, or chapel, wherever, he loved Biola, and he loved the students, and I was going to miss his smiling face.

Sadly (for us), Dr. Cook went to be with the Lord last Friday (April 11th) night. He was with his wife at home when he suddenly passed, and we have all been mourning the loss of Dr. Cook this week. Ironically, this week is our annual missions conference, and if it wasn't for Dr. Cook, who knows if there even would be a missions conference. This was his favorite conference, and basically, his favorite thing in the world was to send out missionaries from Biola. He fought hard to keep the conference around, even though it meant losing 3 days of school.

Here is some information about Dr. Cook...he has an AMAZING story, you should read it!

Dr. Clyde Cook served as Biola University's president for 25 years, from 1982 to 2007, with a unique background as an educator, administrator and fourth-generation missionary.

Both his great-grandparents and grandparents were missionaries to China, and his mother followed in their footsteps. While traveling there by ship, she met her future husband, an officer on the ship, and a year later was married to this Christian sea captain from Scotland.

Born in Hong Kong, the fourth of six children, Clyde was faced with adversity at an early age when the Cook family was imprisoned in three different concentration camps during World War II. In 1942, by God's grace they were reunited in South Africa.

After five years in South Africa, the Cooks came to the United States and settled in Laguna Beach, California, where Clyde was named California Interscholastic Federation basketball player of the year in 1953. He was offered athletic scholarships to thirteen different major universities.

Clyde received his Bachelor of Arts degree from Biola University (1957) and his Master of Divinity (1960) and Master of Theology (1962) from Talbot Theological Seminary. He earned his Doctor of Missiology (1974) at Fuller Theological Seminary.

After graduating from Biola, Clyde served as the school's Athletic Director from 1957 to 1960. From 1963-1967 he and his wife, Anna Belle, were missionaries with O.C. Ministries (Overseas Crusades then) in Cebu City in the Philippines. During this time Clyde participated in pastors' conferences, city-wide crusades, lay institute training, youth conferences and Bible school teaching. He traveled extensively, visiting more than 72 countries in athletic and drama evangelism and to represent Biola University. In 1971, he spent six months in the Philippines helping to set up theological extension education programs.

Returning to Biola in 1967 as an Assistant Professor of Missions, Clyde was then appointed Director of Intercultural Studies and Missions and helped to develop Biola's nationally acclaimed program in cross-cultural education. Called to the presidency of O.C. Ministries in 1978, he ably guided the mission organization to an increased level of financial stability and multiplied foreign field effectiveness.

Clyde served on the Biola Board of Trustees from 1980 to 1982 when he was invited by a unanimous vote of the Board to assume the seventh presidency of Biola University on June 1, 1982 and became president emeritus on July 1, 2007.

The crazy thing about all of this is the fact that Clyde had a heart attack at the age of 49. It was a type so serious that it’s called “the widowmaker” — 100 percent blockage of his heart’s left main artery. Cook remained in critical condition for five days and was hospitalized for 24. Many people feared that his term as president would be cut short. But he recovered, and kept on serving for years!

It's no coincidence that Dr. Cook felt the Lord leading him to retire at this 100th year of Biola, and help in the process of choosing Barry Corey to be the next president. If Dr. Cook would have passed away at age 49, who knows what would have happened with the school...

The Lord has His hand over all of our lives, and we just need to put our faith in Him, and trust that His plan is the best plan of all.

I will miss you Dr. Cook, you were truly a great man.

To read more about Dr. Clyde Cook, please visit


Josh said...

thank you.
I am no longer worried for your blog!

carissa anne said...

i just love reading that man's story over and over. it makes his passing so much sweeter to think about. i know we're all mourning this week and stuff, but i can't help but be overwhelmingly happy for Clyde Cook. by all accounts, he walked into God's presence as a worker unashamed.