Hear our Event Speakers

Regional events let you hear from members of the Wheaton community without traveling far from home. Now, even if you missed your event you can enjoy these insightful lectures and talks given across the country—right from your computer. Learn more about our regional events.


Dr. Jerry Root, Associate Professor and Director of the Evangelism Initiative for the Billy Graham Center
Why Are We Afraid to Tell People God Loves Them?
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In this thought-provoking talk, Dr. Root explains that most people don’t need to be convinced they are sinners, they need to be convinced there is a God that knows them and loves them anyway. In this lecture Dr. Root helps listeners re-evaluate and embolden how they share this good news. Drawing upon examples in his own life, he offers practical, everyday ways to share God’s love with others. This lecture will change the way you think about evangelism!

Mike Swider '77, Wheaton College Head Football Coach
The Secret to Staying Faithful
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Be inspired and motivated to live a life of faithfulness. Drawing on his 38 years of coaching and 25 years of marriage, Coach Swider shares five ways Christ followers can train in order to navigate within the current culture, remain faithful, and be the heroes our world is yearning for. Whether you are a student, parent or professional, this talk is sure to challenge!

D. Jeffrey Bingham, Associate Dean, Biblical & Theological Studies, and Professor of Theology
Past, Present, & Future: Staying True to our Biblical Heritage
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How is Wheaton College maintaining its faithful teaching of God’s Word, and what challenges and opportunities does it face as it does so?

Mike Swider '77, Wheaton College Head Football Coach
Living Life Without Regrets
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Wheaton football challenges its athletes to go beyond living casually to living a life that will make a difference. Coaches teach, motivate, and inspire athletes to go beyond their perceived limits. Drawing on his years of coaching experience, Mike Swider shares 12 characteristics of an individual who lives life without regrets.

Rev. Dr. Wayne "Coach" Gordon '75, Pastor of Lawndale Community Church
Who is Your Neighbor?
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Drawing from his book, Who Is My Neighbor?: Lessons Learned From a Man Left for Dead, Wayne Gordon will share his thoughts on the parable of the Good Samaritan and show us how these lessons can be a starting point for relationships in our communities. Over the last 35 years, Pastor Wayne Gordon has pioneered a ministry to the urban poor that has become an influential model nationwide. Affectionately known as “Coach,” he is founding pastor of Lawndale Community Church and chairman/president of the Christian Community Development Association. In 2010, the Wheaton College Alumni Association honored Wayne as Alumnus of the Year for Distinguished Service to Society.

Dr. Leland Ryken, Professor of English
The Book of Books
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Since 1968, Dr. Leland Ryken has taught Wheaton students to love the written word; perhaps you were one of them? Hear Dr. Ryken, in his final year of teaching, reflect on his career-long interest in the Bible as literature and shares about his recent experience as the spokesperson for the 400th anniversary of the King James Bible.

Jerry Root

Dr. Jerry Root, Assistant Professor of Evangelism/Associate Director of the Institute of Strategic Evangelism, Billy Graham Center
The Sacrament of Evangelism
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Has the church in America lost its evangelistic zeal and forgotten how to re-ignite it? Dr. Jerry Root discusses the heart of true evangelism: joining in the work that Christ is already doing in the lives of others. In this lecture we will explore what it means to live a ‘sacramentally evangelistic’ lifestyle, discussing why we share our faith, Christ’s role in our evangelism, and the deep longings of our heart.

Jay Wood

Dr. Jay Wood, Professor of Philosophy
The Liberal Arts and Christian Formation - Why Wheaton College is about cultivating character, not just conveying content.
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Wheaton College exists to help build the church and improve society worldwide by promoting the development of whole and effective Christians through excellence in programs of Christian higher education. This is Wheaton’s mission, but does a Wheaton education actually help produce whole and effective Christians? Dr. Jay Wood illuminates how the liberal arts at Wheaton are cultivating intellectual, civic, moral, and spiritual character in today’s students.

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