Religious groups bring faith to campus
A life long journey for some, ignored by others, and embraced by the ones that have it, faith is a slippery subject. At Colorado State University-Pueblo, there are many active organizations that join together in order to be with others who have the same beliefs.
Hebrew 11:1 says “faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.”
Although the organizations enjoy intermixing, there are 5 established clubs on campus that believe in God. All of these 5 practice the teachings of the Bible. They are New Life, Campus Catholic Ministry, Campus Crusade for Christ, Christian Challenge and Fellowship of Christian Athletes.
The Oxford English Dictionary says that faith is “belief, trust, confidence.”
There are many opportunities for college students to learn about faith on campus. An alternate devotional group who also embraces faith is the Organization of Pegan Students.
The newest organization on campus is New Life. They are based out of Praise Assembly of God and ran by Jonathan Lewis and his wife, Jamie. New Life gathers on Tuesdays at 7p.m. in the Walking Stick Clubhouse with around 20 attendants.
Christian Challenge has Bible studies on Mondays and other functions throughout the week. They have about 20 members, said Ryann Frank, president.
Campus Crusade meets Thursdays at 7:00 in the OUC as well as multiple other meetings and prayer sessions, said Matt Haslar, president. 40-50 students regularly attend sessions.
Sundays at 7 p.m., Mass is the largest gathering of Catholic Campus Ministries, said Angela DiPaolo, president. About 20 students actively participate.
This is New Life’s first year as an official campus organization, but they have been active on campus in the past. In 2007, they sponsored a Thanksgiving dinner for students that couldn’t make it home for the holidays, said Lewis.
Lewis said they continued with their newfound Thanksgiving tradition this year serving about 120 students. It was approximately double the number full stomachs than the first year.
New Life is a local chapter of a national organization and Lewis wanted to start working closer with the other Christian groups on campus. The organizations that were contacted all said they enjoy working with one another.
“Even though our ministries have different approaches, we all serve the same purpose (which is to be witnesses to our faith on campus) and we are all united under the same God. Therefore, coming together with other ministries is something that is important to CCM,” said DiPaolo.
New Life, teaming up with Campus Crusade and other organizations, are sponsoring an event featuring former NY Giants linebacker Keith Davis, a motivational speaker who has been on ABC, NBC, CBS, BET, ESPN, USA TODAY networks and in “Sports Illustrated”, “Ebony”, “Essence” and “Parade Magazines.”
The organizations that responded are all active in the community. Lewis said that they serve food at the Wayside Cross, a mission helping to feed the homeless, the second Saturday of every month.
The Catholic Campus Ministries will be cleaning the local Ghandi Peace Garden at Runyon Lake for Earth day, said DiPaolo.
In addition to community involvement, the organizations plan trips and activities for their members. Activities range from movie nights to football games.
Christian Challenge enjoys game nights, movie nights, going to a corn maze, conferences, and super bowl parties, said Frank.
Trips are in the works as well. Lewis said that New Life is planning to go to Mexico to work with kids in a poor community. They plan to drive there in a couple of vans and stay for about 10 days.
Campus Crusade and New Life are also planning a hurricane relief trip, said Haslar.
Frank said that Christian Challenge has gone to Kansas City the past two spring breaks and worked on the campus of Midwestern Seminary
Catholic Crusade Ministries also plans to travel to Chimayo, New Mexico this spring to see the famous “healing sand,” said DiPaolo.
“We would love to have anyone on any walk of life come and join us,” said Haslan.
Lewis said he believes that Christian based beliefs have the “best and most complete answers” for students looking for a better understanding of life.