Samford University’s School of the Arts will host a luncheon Oct. 8 to announce the major initiatives of anima, the university’s new Forum for Worship and the Arts. The new program is funded by a three-year, $300,000 grant from the Christ Is Our Salvation (CIOS) Foundation of Waco, Texas.

Samford music professor and anima director Eric Mathis said the luncheon will bring together Samford students and employees, ministers, worship leaders, denominational leaders and anima board members.

Although there are programs exploring worship and the arts in the U.S., Samford alone will house such a program among accredited departments in a school of the arts. No Baptist institution, and no undergraduate university in the southeast, is engaging worship and the arts at the level of anima.

The Oct. 8 launch of anima coincides with the program’s first guest speaker. Christian author Greg Scheer, Minister of Worship at Church of the Servant in Grand Rapids and Music Associate at the Calvin Institute of Christian Worship, will lead free public events throughout the day, both on campus and at Dawson Memorial Baptist Church.

For information about anima and event participation, contact Eric Mathis at
Samford is a leading Christian university offering undergraduate programs grounded in the liberal arts with an array of nationally recognized graduate and professional schools. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. The Wall Street Journal ranks Samford 1st nationally for student engagement and U.S. News & World Report ranks Samford 37th in the nation for best undergraduate teaching and 97th nationally for best value. Samford enrolls 5,758 students from 48 states and 22 countries in its 10 academic schools: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy and public health. Samford fields 17 athletic teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference, and ranks 3rd nationally for its Graduation Success Rate among all NCAA Division I schools.