Friends of Murray Library


Championing Literacy!

On the National MLK Day of Service (January 16, 2023), Friends teamed up with the 14th Annual Central PA MLK Day of Service & Reading Is Fundamental (RIF) as well as with students from Messiah's Multicultural Student Programs, and Agape Center for Local and Global Engagement to champion literacy by stuffing 100 literacy kits for local children.  Kits contained engaging activities centered around "My Elephant Sized Dream", a book about Dr. King's dream for a beloved community.  Volunteers also helped students make no sew blankets to be donated to Bethesda Mission.

Watch for future events as we celebrate Friends 30th Anniversary!


Who are the Friends of Murray Library? 

From its formal beginning in 1993, Friends has promoted the mission of Murray Library with a variety of purchases, projects and programs that extend beyond the library’s operational budget.  We invite you to join us in our efforts to enrich the resources of Murray Library, a central component in the education of Messiah students and the greater Messiah community.


Purposes of Friends of Murray Library

  • To stimulate interest in the collections and facilities of Murray Library.
  • To provide an opportunity for those interested in the library to participate in exhibits, programs, and volunteer activities.
  • To attract gifts of books, manuscripts, and other materials for the library’s enrichment.
  • To encourage and receive financial contributions for needs beyond the library budget, such as building special collections.

Friends Bylaws:

  • Click here to review. 


Benefits enjoyed by Friends:

  • Library borrowing privileges, including DVDs
  • Twelve interlibrary loan requests per year
  • Invitation to Friends events
  • Receipt of Friends mailings
  • Eligibility to serve on Friends Board

Become a Friend today:

Choose from one of the following categories:

  • Student Contributor ($5 annual)
  • Single Contributor ($35 annual)
  • Family Contributor ($50 annual)
  • Sponsor ($100 annual)
  • Lifetime Contributor ($500 one-time)

To view an online brochure with membership application, click here. If mailing the application, please send to:

Friends of Murray Library
Messiah University
Attn: Tracy Sheaffer
One University Avenue, Suite 3002
Mechanicsburg, PA 17055

To register and pay online, click the “Become a Friend” button at the top of this page.



Library Student Research Grant: Since 2003, Friends has awarded more than $19,000 to fund selected proposals by Messiah students for research projects.  Their research uses both Murray Library resources and additional resources at other institutions and organizations.

Please join us in congratulating Hye Lim Jung, the 2021-2022 Friends of Murray Library Student Research Grant awardee.  Hye Lim will graduate in 2023 with a bachelor’s degree in English.​ 

Her research project is entitled “Tracing My Identity through Korean Myths and Folklore”. The project focuses on retelling Korean myths, legends, and folklore by narrating a fictional Korean character who discovers how the lives and culture of her ancestors in the past impact her worldview, culture and daily life. Personally, Hye Lim will be able to explore her identity as a Korean third culture kid who grew up in Papua New Guinea through the retellings of Korean myths and folklore. 

In addition to resources available through Murray Library, she will incorporate additional research from Princeton University Library and the Korean Cultural Center New York. 

Hye Lim’s research will culminate with a presentation at the annual Friends dinner in the fall of 2022.  Dr. Christine Perrin and Dr. Samuel Smith are her faculty advisors. 

Congratulations Hye Lim! 

20th Annual Dinner & Program: Friends 20th Annual Dinner & Program was held on Friday, November 4 in Hostetter Chapel.  We were delighted to welcome Anita Voelker as our keynote speaker.  Anita taught for many years in the Education Department at Messiah University.  In her presentation, "A Peek Through the Looking Glass: Why Children's Books Matter," Anita discussed how many readers have one particular children's book that sustained them in childhood and fortified them in adulthood.  Anita's presentation enabled guests to peek through the proverbial looking glass to discover the richness of children's literature through both images and words.

Over 100 guests attended and enjoyed a buffet style meal catered by Messiah's Two Bridges Catering

Special Collections:

Each of Murray Library's four special collections traces its beginning to Friends of Murray Library.

  • Artists' Books - Visually exciting and intellectually provocative, artists' books push to the outermost limits our assumed definition of what a book is, and turn the practice of reading into a novel experience. Simply defined, artists' books are a hybrid art form in which books and art intersect. Many of the over 300 artists' books in Murray Library's collection are the work of well-known book artists, including works by Messiah University art faculty. Friends continues to fund new acquisitions to the collection, enhancing its use as an interdisciplinary teaching resource. To view an online brochure of the Artists' Books collection, click here

  • Ruth E. Engle Memorial Collection of Children's Book Illustration - Dedicated in April 2004, this collection of original picture-book art by award-winning illustrators was established with gifts given to Friends of Murray Library in memory of Ruth Engle, a charter member who also served on its board. New artworks are added to the collection, funded by Friends and gifts from donors. Currently, more than two dozen artworks are on display, reflecting a variety of media, styles and subjects and including works by illustrators from Australia, China, England, Korea, Mali and Russia, as well as the USA. View the online portfolio featuring 15 of the more than 40 works currently in the collection. For a complete list of other illustrators represented in the collection, please click here. Better still, visit the collection, free of charge, during library hours

  • Canadian Literature - Friends committed more than $10,000 to establish this special collection, currently consisting of more than 900 titles by such influential Canadian authors as Margaret Atwood, Rudy Wiebe, Robertson Davies, Leonard Cohen and Alice Munro, each identified by a Friends-commissioned bookplate. The collection is being expanded to include poetry, plays, critical and other non-fiction works.

  • W. Jim Neidhardt Collection on Religion and Science - Dr. W. Jim Neidhardt's keen interest in the relationship between modern science and the Christian faith, as well as the presence of several longtime friends at Messiah University, led him to give his extensive personal library of Murray Library. Subject areas in the collection are astonishingly diverse, ranging from physics, engineering and theology to cybernetics, chaos theory and aesthetics. A Friends-commissioned bookplate bearing Neidhardt's likeness portrays aspects of his lifework and identifies volumes in the collection.

Friends Board Members:

Dr. Ed Arke
Mr. Aaron Bert
Ms. Harriet Bicksler
Ms. Libby Coldsmith
Ms. Sarah Fischer
Mr. Chad Frey, Chair
Ms. Ilse Kryemadhi
Dr. James LaGrand
Ms. Madison Myers
Ms. Linda Poston, Murray Library Director
Ms. Jamie Rice, Murray Library Staff Liaison
Ms. Alissa Ringer
Ms. Tracy Sheaffer, Murray Library Administrative Assistant
Ms. Elizabeth Hutchinson, Student Representative


Friends of Murray Library Student Chapter

If you’re a student interested in the library, then you should join FoML students!  You can participate in events, exhibits, and volunteer opportunities, all in the name of learning!  Cost to join is $5.  For more information, email Tracy Sheaffer at