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OBU to Host Fourth Annual Student Apologetics Conference, March 4

January 17, 2023

Registration is now underway for OBU’s fourth annual youth apologetics conference, Generation Why. Students, youth groups, college ministry groups and others around the state and region are invited to attend the conference on March 4. The event will take place on the OBU campus in Shawnee.

Generation Why, also referred to as “GenWhy,” enlightens and equips students to recognize the importance of reasonable faith in a post-Christian age. The conference is designed for students from middle school, high school and college to be prepared to recognize and know their faith more deeply, and to be able to defend their faith more effectively.

Students will learn about the rational foundations that show how the Christian faith is true while gaining practical tools to tell others about that truth. This year’s one-day conference centers around the theme of “Creation.”

GenWhy will begin at 9 a.m. and conclude at 4:30 p.m. It will feature three general sessions and multiple breakout sessions throughout the day. The OBU musical ensemble of 519 Collective will lead the conference in worship.

Registration cost is $10 per person, $60 per group for groups with 6 to 14 people, and $70 per group for groups of 15 or more.

Dr. Melissa Cain Travis is a featured keynote speaker for the day. Her topic will focus on “The Language of Life: A Biochemical Case for Intelligent Design.” Travis earned a Ph.D in humanities from Faulkner University and her master’s degree in science and religion from Biola University. Travis earned a Bachelor of Science in biology from Campbell University.  Dr. Travis is an accomplished author. She also teaches graduate courses for Colorado Christian University's Lee Strobel Center and serves as a Fellow at the Discovery Institute's Center for Science and Culture. She is a member of the Evangelical Philosophical Society's Executive Council.

General session speaker, Dr. Katie McCoy, serves as director of women's ministry at Texas Baptists. She will address the conference with the topic, “Who Am I in Christ?”. McCoy holds a Ph.D. in Systematic Theology from Southwestern Seminary in Texas, where she served on faculty for five years. Her research includes the patterns of justice for women in Old Testament laws as well as the intersection of theology, gender, and women's studies. She is a frequent speaker and writer on women's and gender issues.

Dr. Jacob Shatzer will highlight the message of “Christianity and Creation Care” during the third session. Shatzer is associate dean of the School of Theology and Missions at Union University in Jackson, Tennessee.  He also serves as associate professor of theological studies and assistant provost and director of curriculum and program development. Shatzer teaches Bible, theology, and ethics and has authored several books.

Liberty DeGeorge, an OBU junior philosophy major with an apologetics emphasis and psychology pre-counseling major, has attended GenWhy for the past three years since its inception.

“At GenWhy, I was encouraged,” she said, “because I realized I wasn’t the only one with these questions, but that my questions were valid and that I could find answers for them.”

GenWhy 2023 is facilitated through OBU’s Hobbs School of Theology and Ministry. Registration for the GenWhy Conference can be found on the Generation Why event page.