Wednesday, May 23, 2007

More on Campus Ministry

Some thoughts on Campus Ministry spurred on by Andy B. over at Enter the Rainbow.

Some documents worth reading related to this article.
This is Our Story from GCFA
Campus Ministry Resolution #28 from Cal-Pac Annual Conference 2006.
(Not available online at this time)

I am more and more discouraged at such thoughts, as the force of ministry seems to indicate a move to sustain rather than change (hearts, minds and doors).
Our own Annual Conference (Cal-Pac) went forward with a similar initiative last year and this year is scrambling to undo the damage of the proposed change, before it ever got moving with substantive change to do away with the system.
Seriously, I do think tying the college ministry units with the local church is a positive move, it is a great partnership for the University of Alabama Wesley Foundation and Trinity UMC, in Tuscaloosa. Unfortunately there are very few churches so close to the campus where many of our campus minsitry units are housed. But, the connection is enhanced as new students are drawn into the mission of the local church, and the local church takes on the issues and concerns of the college campus.
The UMC has a long history of making inroads in education and to leave these things behind only serves to discredit the UMC with the younger generation as we leave the halls of learning we once so highly valued, and lessening the appeal of the church to the average student.
I see the key to rejuvination as one that embraces the climbers turn of phrase, "If you can't get out of it, then get into it."
The move to cluster campus ministry into the local church is a matter of stating we are not ready to get out of campus ministry, but we are leaving the system that has worked at generating new ministers, introducing the faith to countless students, and providing a forum for discussion.
While I do agree that we need to reexamine how to do campus ministry, I do not think that shuffling the whole kit and caboodle over to the local church, which is already financially strained and not desirous of new ministries, is the key to change in this instance.
Sorry to go on, but I will cut and paste and link in my own blog.


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