If anyone could challenge the depth of a rabbi’s knowledge of Jewish studies, it would be the Rev. Yong-Soo Hyun (Ph.D. ’90). He is the founder and president of Shema Education Institute in Los Angeles. The institute opened in 2000 and houses the three-semester Shema Pastoral Clinic, which is similar to a Doctor of Ministry program, and focuses on holistic character development, Jewish communities and the Shema — the central prayer of Jewish faith. Every third semester, his students from all over the world take field trips to Jewish communities in L.A. where they participate in activities like Shabbat rituals in Orthodox Jewish homes, lectures from rabbis and visiting the Museum of Tolerance. Hyun has written 28 books on Judaism, many of which have been used as textbooks in theological seminaries. The Christian Publishing Association in Korea awarded his book, Parents, Make Disciples of Your Children, “Book of the Year” in 2002. “My goal is to make all families biblical families,” Hyun said. After graduating from the doctoral program at Talbot, he attended American Jewish University and Yeshiva Los Angeles, where he studied Jewish education under mentor Rabbi Yitzchok Adlerstein. His studies led him to discover the Great Commission of the Old Testament (Gen.18:19; Deut. 6:4-9), which call parents to make disciples of their children. He married his wife, Bok-Hee Hyun, in 1975 and has four adult sons: Stephen, Phillip and twins Peter and Andrew. He worked to incorporate the Old Testament Great Commission into his family life over the years and says it is an area where the Korean church has failed. It was part of his motivation for opening the institute, which has grown from a graduating class of 14 in 2002 to 47 in 2012.

Forget dancing with the stars. Carol Aspling’s (’94) choir students sing with them instead. The Southern California Children’s Choir, one Aspling has conducted since 1996, performed “What a Wonderful World” at the 2012 Academy Awards. She was the director of music education at the Crystal Cathedral for 16 years, and her students once sang with Michael W. Smith and performed at Carnegie Hall in New York City. “The thing that I enjoy the most is watching the faces of my students as they enter a great performance hall and then listen to their glorious voices soar in the beautiful music they create in places like those,” she said. The advanced SCCC recently sang in the opera “Carmen.” Aspling comes from a musical family and grew up singing in church and school choirs. However, she prefers teaching music to students over performing. Along with conducting the SCCC, she teaches the women’s chorus at Biola, and she also works as a choral assistant at Orange Lutheran High School. She enjoys teaching students new concepts and watching them apply those to new music. She recalls the positive influence of professors when she studied music at Biola. “Professors were incredible mentors and spiritual leaders, and many of my professors’ words still play back in my head today as I am teaching my students,” she said. Aspling lives in Orange County with her husband, Dave. Both alumni, they met while singing in the Biola Chorale. Their son, Jacob, is also musically inclined and sings in the SCCC under Aspling’s direction.

Even former attorney general Ed Meese refers to him as “Mr. Constitution.” Mike Holler (’78) regularly speaks at seminars and recently published The Constitution Made Easy: A Tea Partier’s Guide (see page 29 for details). After realizing few Americans read the Constitution because they don’t understand its language, he translated the document into modern English. “We hope that The Constitution Made Easy will increase both readership and literacy, and do for politics in America what modern Bible translations (like the NASB and NIV) have done for the church,” he said. He learned how to interpret and translate documents when he studied at Talbot. “Compared to Greek exegesis, it was a relatively simple matter to translate the older English Constitution into a modern version,” he said. “But it still required the knowledge and discipline of a trained translator.” While he says he is not the most knowledgeable person about the Constitution, he says it is a gold standard for settling questions in American politics. However, he also recognizes that the Constitution does not hold all the answers for America. “My goal is not to save America by the Constitution, but to save Americans by the gospel of Jesus Christ,” he said. Holler was given the opportunity last September to pray at the dinner before a presidential debate. He lives in Teller County, Colo., with his wife, Cathy, and four of their seven children.

Compassion International and World Vision might be the first organizations people think of when it comes to helping children in impoverished areas overseas, but alumna Lori Clock (’85) is making a difference through a different one: ByGrace Trust. She has served on the ByGrace Board of Directors since it was created in 2009. The organization offers sponsorships for children in Kenya. As an elementary school teacher at Gardenhill Elementary School in La Mirada, Calif., she founded Smiles OverSeas Global Service Club and got her students involved in raising money for the ByGrace children’s home in Kenya. Clock says they raise an average of $8,000 annually. Raising support started in her classroom, but now different classes have a student they sponsor every year with LovePacks, collections of essentials like clothing and school supplies. Clock will make her fourth trip to Kenya this summer, taking hand-knitted scarves and 157 LovePacks along with her. Updates on these projects and others can be found on the website her students created, sosserviceclub.weebly.com. While her students are having a positive influence on the lives of Kenyan children, Clock has witnessed changes in even the youngest Gardenhill students. She says one of her kindergarten students, a foster child, donated the five pennies he owned to the orphans in Kenya. “I was in tears,” she says. “It reminded me of the story in the Bible about the mite and the widow. From the heart of babes we can change the world.” Clock was married in March and lives in Yorba Linda, Calif., with her husband.