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Alumnus of the Year 2017

President Michael Pawelke, Spurgeon and Gina Marie Root
President Michael Pawelke, Spurgeon and Gina Marie Root

Spurgeon Root is Briercrest's Alumnus of the Year for 2017. He was presented with the award during the graduation ceremonies in April.

Having grown up in Alberta, Spurgeon moved to Regina to attend Canadian Bible College, where he earned a BA in Religion. He began his inner-city work while he was a student and, after graduating, began working at an open-custody youth facility. During that time, Spurgeon and his wife, Gina Marie, moved to north central Regina where they have lived for 15 years.

 Later, Spurgeon took the position of youth pastor at Healing Hearts Ministries, a position he served in for 12 years before transferring to his current position as director of outreach ministries. His work includes running Healing Hands, a sheltered work program that provides practical work skills to those facing physical, mental, or spiritual challenges.

 In 2011, Spurgeon completed a Master of Arts degree in Marriage and Family Counselling at Briercrest Seminary and wrote his thesis on family-of-origin factors for First Nations gang members in Saskatchewan. This coincided with his work with Regina Anti-Gang Services, an organization that provided support for exited gang members.

 Spurgeon recently co-authored a chapter about Regina for the upcoming book Soul of the City: Mapping the Spiritual Geography of Eleven Canadian Cities, and has begun work for a book that will expand his research on family-of-origin factors for gang members. In addition, his first fiction story, The Way of Cain, has just been released on Kindle/Amazon.

 Throughout his 20 years of working in Regina's inner city, Spurgeon has been involved with a number of different organizations. He continues to serve and invest in the youth of the community.

See past Alumnus of the Year awards

Through my education, I have had my eyes opened to the radical call of the Gospel. Through the community, I have been given the opportunity to live this call out.
Matthew Pauls