WINONA LAKE — Grace College will welcome the founder of LifeWise Academy and an Ohio State football champion, Joel Penton, to its campus on Tuesday.
Penton will speak at Grace College’s chapel service at 10:30 a.m. in the Manahan Orthopaedic Capital Center, 610 Wooster Road, Winona Lake. Afterward, he will share about his nationwide effort to legally provide Bible education in public schools at 1 p.m. in the East Banquet Room of Westminister Hall, 105 9th St., Winona Lake. Both events are free and open to the public, according to a news release from Grace College.
“We are excited to have Joel on campus to share what he is doing to make Christ known in public schools,” said Brent Mencarelli, dean of chapel and community life at Grace. “He lives out what we hope for each of our students — that they would allow their faith in Jesus to inform their future career.”
A former defensive tackle and national champion for the perennial powerhouse Ohio State Buckeyes, where he earned the Danny Wuerffel Trophy (otherwise known as the humanitarian Heisman), Joel Penton is the author of three books and a widely sought-after speaker. More than 1,000 live audiences and a million people have heard his message.
Most notably, he is the founder and CEO of LifeWise Academy — a groundbreaking program providing Bible education to students in over 100 public schools during school hours nationwide.
Founded in 2019, LifeWise Academy is a released time religious instruction (RTRI) program. Under released time laws, students can be released from public school during the school day to attend religious classes, provided the program is off of school property, privately funded and parent-permitted. Since its launch, LifeWise has grown to serve more than 100 schools nationwide by offering practical Bible-based education to improve students’ academic performance, character development and mental health.
"We're convinced that released time has been the single greatest missed opportunity to impact the next generation of public school students,” said Penton. “What we're seeing and experiencing is bigger than we ever imagined. It’s starting to feel … like a revolution."
LifeWise believes all students can benefit from the message of the Bible and takes great care to make all instruction relatable and helpful to those without a church or Christian background. LifeWise Academy also serves alongside educators by reinforcing and complementing their efforts.
To learn more about LifeWise, Penton invites pastors, educators and other key individuals in the Warsaw/Winona Lake area to a meeting on Tuesday at 1 p.m. in the East Banquet Room of Westminister Hall.
For those unable to attend, more information can be found at https://lifewise.org/.