|Director of Commuter Affairs Larry Provost and his wife, Lori, adjunct professor of stage movement.|
Friends and colleagues of Liberty University’s Director of Commuter Affairs Sgt. Larry Provost gathered together Wednesday for a military send-off luncheon and time of prayer as Provost prepares for a yearlong deployment to Afghanistan.
The send-off, hosted by Vice President of Student Affairs Dr. Mark Hine and Dean of Students Dr. Keith Anderson, gave guests an opportunity to show their support for the Provost family. Provost’s wife, Lori, is a Liberty alumna and adjunct professor of stage movement in the Theatre Arts Department.
Provost has been Liberty’s Director of Commuter Affairs since 2008, helping close to 6,000 off-campus students connect to campus life at Liberty University as well as the Lynchburg community.
Provost enlisted in the U.S. Army in 2005 and joined the Army National Guard in December 2010.
He served in Afghanistan from 2002 to 2003, and in Iraq from 2004 to 2005. He will be working with his unit to continue to provide roads, bridges, schools, hospitals, and other reconstruction projects to help facilitate the local government in Afghanistan.
“It’s called civil affairs,” Provost said. “It’s kind of ironic because the acronym for that is C.A. The acronym for what I do at Liberty is C.A.”
He said his role at Liberty has prepared him in many ways, “to try and reach people that it may be tough to reach.”
“I think if we can perhaps get the people of Afghanistan to have even more faith in what the United States of America does, perhaps this country -- which sends out more missionaries than any other country in the world, this country which is the most compassionate country, I feel, in the history of mankind -- maybe then we can be a bridge to Christ’s saving grace,” he said.
Red balloons, tables displaying Provost’s military and academic awards and distinctions, as well as photo albums from Provost’s previous tours of duty to the Middle East lined the room. Guests were asked to write words of encouragement on keepsake cards for Provost to read while overseas.
Provost plans to resume his role as Director of Commuter Affairs when he returns from deployment.
Lori Provost will be spending the fall semester in New York City studying dance education through New York University’s program with the American Ballet Theatre. She will be receiving her master’s degree in December and plans to return to Liberty to teach dance classes in spring 2012.
She thanked the guests for their friendship, support and prayers.
“I really just want to stand behind my man and his unit and just do some battle for him on the home front,” she said. “We will be back. We can all just rejoice in all that God has done during this time.”
Thomas Road Baptist Church executive pastor Douglas Randlett commended Provost for his faithfulness to God, and asked guests to commit to praying for the safety and encouragement of the Provost family in the upcoming year. Hine and Anderson also spoke about Provost’s commitment to his work with commuters and the community of Lynchburg.
“Larry has had a heart for our commuters. He has done everything he could to make them feel a part of Liberty University, and he’s done a lot of things that have accomplished that. Larry, thank you for your investment and thank you for your willingness to go and do what all of us in this room aren’t going to do. We’ll do everything we can to support you,” Hine said.
Provost was also presented with a photography book of World War II images that was signed by each guest.
“We all have a purpose in God’s kingdom and I truly believe that at the end of the day, there is nothing more important than leading others to Christ,” Provost said.. “I’m just thankful to have what is hopefully at least a very small part of that.”
Views expressed in this article are not those of the U.S. military or any other government agency.