DBU Honors Modern-Day Hymn Writer Keith Getty with Honorary Doctorate of Divinity

The Gettys with Dr. Wright

On September 27, DBU had the privilege of hosting Keith and Kristyn Getty on campus for both the Monday morning Fall Convocation service and their "Christ Our Hope" concert that evening. The Gettys have played an essential role in the lives of many Christians today through their creation of new hymns and anthems, recreation of old beloved hymns, and dedication to encouraging the saints. What a true blessing it was to have this couple on campus.

During Monday's Fall Convocation service in Chapel, DBU bestowed upon Keith Getty an Honorary Doctorate of Divinity recognizing all he has done for the Christian community through musical compositions, books, resources, concerts, and conferences. The service opened with the DBU Chapel Worship team playing some of the Gettys' most cherished songs, followed by opening remarks given by Dr. Jay Harley, Vice President for Student Affairs.

As is DBU's tradition, the DBU family stood and read together from Scripture and prayer, led by DBU Chancellor Dr. Gary Cook. DBU President Dr. Adam Wright then reflected upon his relationship with the Gettys before introducing Dr. Norma Hedin, who serves as DBU's Provost. Dr. Hedin followed Dr. Wright by reading Keith Getty's citation, which granted Keith with his Honorary Doctorate of Divinity.

Keith expressed great gratitude for the recognition he received, overwhelmed by the goodness and grace of the Lord in his life. "I believe that this is the most exciting time to be a Christian," Keith said. With great opportunity, however, comes great challenge. "We have to be deep believers to survive," Keith continued. He encouraged all in attendance to strive towards what is holy in all that we, as a body of believers, do. "Take your skills and embrace them," he urged. To truly thrive, we must keep our gaze focused on the Creator. While each believer is given specific gifts and talents, it is our faith that unites us. It is our faith in the Lord that fills us up. It is our faith and trust in Jesus that will one day lead us home.

To close the Fall Convocation service, Keith and Kristyn Getty led the DBU family in their most well-known modern-day hymn, "In Christ Alone." Their powerful lyrics rang throughout the Chapel, as students, faculty, staff, and guests all proclaimed "In Christ Alone, my hope is found."

That night, DBU opened the Chapel doors once again to host the "Christ Our Hope" tour. This week marked the first time in 18 months that the Gettys had been able to play live in concert. What a joyous occasion it was to see their band and a volunteer DBU choir led by master's student Hayden Cawood joining together for a night full of new hymns, old hymns, Irish folk instrumental compositions, modern anthems like the Gettys' "The Lord is My Salvation," Matt Boswell and Matt Papa's "His Mercy is More," dancing, and more.

In closing DBU's time spent with the Gettys, the couple led the congregation in singing the familiar Doxology: "Praise God from Whom all Blessings Flow." Praise God for gifted individuals with hearts to make the Lord known like Keith and Kristyn Getty. Praise God for the gift of music. Praise God for the redeeming power of Christ. Amen.

Written by Emmalie Ellis

Emmalie Ellis writes for the University Communications Department at Dallas Baptist University.