Student Spotlight: Caleb Williams

  1.  How did you find your way into the military and then to Austin Seminary?

As a kid I was fascinated by the military and always wanted to serve. It was a higher calling and one that put sacrifice above self. I entered the Navy and served in Special Operations, which is where I actually came to know the Lord. It was when I was able to leave the US and see the world that I started to question my own understanding of the world and my role in it. I now serve in the Army's 143rd Airborne infantry (Ranger) unit and am looking to become a chaplain. Between getting out of the Navy and being here at Seminary, I worked in law enforcement on the local and state levels. I became and instructor and started to teach weapons tactics and self defense all over. I have done a wide range of things from protection of the President of the US to teaching the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.


   2.  Why do you feel that providing a spiritual support system in the military is so crucial?

Sadly, we in the military are the best at four things in the world: National Defense, Alcoholism, Divorce, and Suicide. While the first is a great treasure held by the US, the others are a devastating impact to long deployments, low pay, and bad work/ life conditions. Just the nature of the job makes each day hard. These men and women will seldom ever complain but there comes a point when they break. unfortunately, I know first hand about some of the bad effects of the military and I know how important it is for them to have spiritual leaders helping them through or preventing them from falling into some of them.


   3.  What do you hope to gain in your time at the seminary and beyond?

I came to Austin Seminary because the role of the Chaplain is to comfort all those who are heavy laden, not just from one denomination or even faith. When I talked to the staff and researched the Seminary I could see that I would get to not only learn from a varied group of professors, but I would be able to study with people that lived, worshiped, and saw Theology differently than I do. There is such a wide spectrum of believers here that I will be able to learn from them as much as my studies. This, I believe, will equip me to better relate to the broad brush that makes up our Soldiers and Sailors. My ultimate goal is to be still and listen to what God has for me after graduation. I pray that is to be a chaplain and get "down range" with our military and preach the gospel at the front lines of where ever they are sent.


   4.  What are some of your interests overall and tell us a bit about yourself overall in terms of your background.

My interest are all things competitive. I am a member of the Austin Huns Rugby Club, The local Tri4Him Christian triathlon club, and I try to find time to box and fight on training mats around the area. I do have military training once a month still and I started to work full time at night, so this has all curbed a bit with school and work taking up the majority of my time. I am always looking for a running or biking partner though.

Above: The African American Student Group, with support from the Austin Seminary community, teamed up with The Settlement Home for a Christmas drive last semester. 
Above: Sam Okyere-Mireku, Sarah Payton, and Sabrina Jennings
Above: Sheila Sidberry speaks at the inauguration of Jennifer Lord as full professor at Austin Seminary.