spotlight-category: Religious Studies and Philosophy

Jack Eason ’91

Professors helped alumnus form his philosophy for doing ministry

“The whole environment of Gardner-Webb was very influential in shaping my ministry and helping me hear God’s call and direction.”

Jack Eason with child from mission

Jack Eason ’91 recently celebrated 30 years in the ministry he founded when he was a student at Gardner-Webb University. Originally called Crossover Ministries, the international organization has changed over the years and is now known as Crossover Cups Mission.

“While at Gardner-Webb, I traveled, speaking for churches and youth groups,” related Eason, who lives in Greenville, S.C. “Then, I started leading worship for youth conferences, put together a band, wrote dozens of songs, and recorded albums.”

One of his songs, “Everyday” was recorded by the Christian music group, Newsong, on its album, “Rescue.” Crossover assumed production of a local radio show, the Sound of Light, which experienced national syndication from 1996-2010. The ministry launched a similar TV show that ran from 2000-2006.

About the time the radio show ended, Eason’s ministry began to evolve again through a partnership with Mike Williams and the Cups of Cold Water Project. Now, the main focus is leading a mission in the Dominican Republic (DR) and fighting human trafficking. “The DR is No. 4 in the world for human trafficking,” Eason offered. “We fight it by educating children, teaching life skills, and sharing the hope of Jesus.”

Reflecting on his education from Gardner-Webb, Eason noted the influence of his religion professors. He majored in Christian education and minored in psychology. “I wanted to help people understand who Jesus is, and I wanted to see their lives impacted for the gospel,” Eason shared. “The classes I took were such a great preparation. Whether I agreed with everything the professors said or not, all of their teaching helped me form a philosophy for doing ministry.”

He applied what he learned while serving as a youth pastor for a nearby church. “Dr. Alice Cullinan’s classes were especially practical,” he affirmed, “maybe because of the subject matter or maybe because of her presentation, but they were subjects I could immediately put to work or that answered questions students and leaders in my church were asking.”

His psychology classes were also beneficial, and Dr. David Carscaddon, professor of psychology, became a good friend. “He really connected with a lot of us in his class,” Eason observed. “His genuine interest in what we were doing outside of class made me realize the staff of the school cared about us.”

In addition to support from faculty, Eason said the surrounding community also offered encouragement. “A local pastor allowed me to plug into his church, and he would meet with a few of us each week and talk about ministry things,” Eason informed. “The whole environment of Gardner-Webb was very influential in shaping my ministry and helping me hear God’s call and direction.”

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Brian G. Chilton ’11

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