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Campus pastor for commuter students Bliss Spillar said he is excited about his new job ministering to Liberty University’s off-campus residential students. He said he cares deeply for the spiritual health of Liberty, which includes both commuter and residential students. Spillar said there is a need for commuter students to feel more involved in the spiritual life programs Liberty has to offer.
“Not many people realize that there are over 5,000 students that go to Liberty and do not live on campus. We want to see them connected with other commuters in the area. They also have a unique opportunity to be a light to the local community of Lynchburg more than the on campus student,” Spillar said.
Spillar described his job as commuter pastor as multi-faceted. He said it involves responsive ministry, such as hospital visits and counseling, as well as proactive ministry. Since his position is so new, Spillar said, he is spending lots of time building its structure. He said he plans to re-structure a small group ministry for commuter students and is hoping to launch several new programs for commuters in January 2011.
“The unique thing about Liberty is that not only do we care about the student’s education but we care about the student spiritually. This doesn’t stop once they move off campus. We want to take the same excitement and intentionality that is used on campus to reach the student and create unique avenues to do the same for the off campus student,” Spillar said.
Spillar is a Liberty alumnus. He earned his Bachelor of Science degree in religion with a specialization in Biblical studies in 2008. He is currently working on earning his masters degree in Evangelism and Church Planting from Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary. While earning his undergraduate degree, Spillar was a residential student and is now a commuter student.
He is originally from Texas, but also lived in Baton Rouge, La., and Atlanta, Ga., before moving to Virginia. Spillar recently got engaged. His fiancé, Shelby, graduated from Liberty in 2010. She is likely going to pursue a masters degree from Liberty as well, Spillar said.