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planned giving & trust se r vices
I n his youth, Mel Thompson knew
Adventists were. One day while sitting
nothing about Seventh-day Adventists
in the backseat of the family car, the
or the Adventist university college in
sign really caught her attention. Right
Lacombe, Alta. When he drove by the
then, Cara seemed to sense that God
campus of the university college and
was calling her to attend the school
high school known today as Canadian
on the hilltop. As Cara continued her
University College (CUC) and
search for a university, she spent time
Parkview Adventist Academy (PAA),
with God in prayer and her Bible.
he thought to himself, I wonder what
Cara felt she could hear His voice
that place is. So he asked a friend, who
telling her to go to CUC. She decided
Seth and Cara Bussey with Mel Thompson.
believed it was a correctional school for
to enrol in their Bachelor of Education
girls and jokingly suggested that Mel might find a girlfriend there.
in Elementary Education program. Although she was already a
Years later, in 1978, when Mel was working in Edmonton,
sincere follower of Christ, during her first year at CUC Cara
Alta., an Adventist co-worker set him up on a blind date with
became a Seventh-day Adventist.
Mabel Grovet. As their friendship grew, Mabel took Mel to see
Over the past three years, Cara has not only enjoyed her
CUC’s campus, where she had graduated high school. At last,
studies but also participated in campus life, getting involved in
Mel found out that the mystery buildings were really Christian
spiritual leadership and cheering on CUC’s men’s soccer team.
schools. In due time, Mel joined the Adventist Church, and he
It is through these two activities that Cara met Seth, a religious
and Mabel were married in June 1980. All this time, he wondered
studies student. Friendship turned into love, and they were
why CUC didn’t have a big sign on its land by Alberta’s major
married on April 23, 2014, one day after Seth’s graduation.
north–south artery, Highway 2.
The newlyweds live in Lacombe so that Cara can complete
During the 1997-98 school year, CUC president Kenneth
her degree while Seth commutes to the churches he pastors
Fox visited his friend Mel at his professional accounting firm
in Camrose and Ryley.
and asked Mel to consider a donation to one of several CUC
Mel and Mabel would not have known about Cara had it
projects. “Ken,” Mel said, “If I donate to the school, my preference
not been for David and Julie Grovet, Mabel’s brother and sister-
would be to give toward a great big sign on the highway to let
in-law. Julie Grovet is the field experience coordinator for
everyone know what CUC is.” True to his word, Mel not only
CUC’s education department and she heard about how
gave a donation but also oversaw the construction of a large
Cara ended up at CUC. Because they knew of Mel and Mabel
highway sign built strong enough to withstand hurricane
Thompson’s donation to the highway sign, the connection was
made. David and Julie Grovet invited Seth and Cara Bussey and
Fast-forward to the summer of 2011: Red Deer high school
Mel and Mabel Thompson to their home. It was then, for the
graduate Caroline (Cara) Boyce, a Christian teen, had a constant
first time, that the Thompsons met Cara and heard how the big
prayer on her heart. She asked the Lord for His will in her choice
CUC sign that they had donated years ago changed her life.
of a university to attend in the fall. Since her childhood, Cara
Cara is a very precious return on their donation. Only the Lord
and her family often drove by the large CUC sign on Highway
knows how many of His priceless children have been brought
2. Cara wondered what CUC was about and who Seventh-day
to CUC and to the church by something as simple as a sign. n
M N ove mber 2 014