Luan Tufani, sophomore accounting major, had an inspiration to rekindle faculty, staff and student prayer times after reading the historical account of these prayer times in The Malone Story book. Now every Thursday during chapel hour students, faculty, and staff gather to offer prayer and read scripture.
“It is essential, it’s an honor and a blessing to be praying with these prayer warriors,” said Colleen Winney, a staff member of career development. She has been coming for several years to the faculty prayer, which was opened to students in January due to Tufani’s idea.
Karen Warner, assistant to the provost, also has been coming to the staff prayer meetings for years.
“It’s so encouraging to hear other people pray and join with them. Having the students is a real added blessing,” she said.
Tufani found out about The Malone Story in a group he is involved in on campus, Malone University House of Prayer (MUHOP). Leader of the group, Stephan Nzishura, told him about the book written by Dr. Osborne, the son in law of the founders of the college and president when it moved from Cleveland to Canton in 1956. The book was published in 1970.
The book gives a history of the foundations of the school. Tufani read through the book and said he felt called to action.
“God laid on my heart the need for unity on campus between administration, faculty, staff and students,” he said.
Tufani came to Canton from Brazil in the interest of playing soccer. The first chapel he attended as a visitor on campus prompted his “heart to change,” he said.
“Brenda Young spoke, that chapel changed my life. I didn’t know how it would work for me to come back to Malone, but in my heart I knew I would come back here,” he said.
Now an active member of MUHOP, a student led campus prayer group, Tufani is initiating several prayer initiatives. Besides the faculty, staff and student prayer, he is also helping to promote twenty-four-seven prayer in the Rose Room.
The Rose Room has in the past been reserved for students to pray in, but there have been difficulties with students going to the room for reasons other than prayer. Tufani said he hopes to “copy the motto of heaven” with constant prayer and worship coming out of the room.
“We think God is worthy of this, it would be nice to have worship from the room as well, but right now we’re starting with prayer,” he said.
Tufani and fellow MUHOP member Beth Kerlin started a sign-up sheet comprised of one hour slots for students to sign up for every week. They hope to get a Google doc sent to all students to sign up whenever they wish.
Tufani emphasized in an interview with The Aviso that his story is orchestrated by God alone.
*Correction: An earlier version of this story misstated the title of Karen Warner, as well as the title of The Malone Story.