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passion for collegiate engagement by Wanda Kidd, CBFNC Collegiate Engagement Coordinator

Schools across the state and beyond are on a much-needed CBFNC, through Collegiate Engagement efforts, has given break. In no time at all, though, homework and backpacks full of young adults the freedom to ask questions that allow them to school supplies will be headed out the door and conversations face complex life issues with a faith perspective. We have done about cafeteria food and who is picking up whom after school that with a great deal of thought and investment. That is why will fill the air. For those who are sending their college-age we have made a significant commitment to ministry with this children off to campus this fall, other concerns dominate population, not just for CBFNC students, but for all students on parental thoughts. our NC campuses. These If it is their first students are the lifeblood year, the concerns look of the church that flows something like this: Will through them into today’s they make friends? Will they church and the church’s get up and go to class? Will hope for tomorrow. they miss us as much as we Collegiate engagement miss them? Oh, but I hope is different from they will not be homesick and congregational planning. miserable. Did we do enough Church ministry is slower to prepare them for this moving with time to ponder transition? I hope they will not and blend young adults do something really stupid. into the life of the church. Student concerns during the first two Ministry on campus, however, is like How to support CBFNC years of college focus mostly around a moving sidewalk full of upheavals, Collegiate Engagement relationships, selection of majors, unbounded joy, and heartbreaking grades, and places they want to go and sadness, most of which is done Tell others about CBFNC and things they want to do, usually with separate and isolated from a students’ collegiate engagement; friends and groups other than family. family and church system. That is The last years are full of angst about where we, as CBFNC, want to be Pray for the students and the what to do next, where to go from here, present not only with our students mission of collegiate engagement; and how to pay off school debt and but with all students. Give to support CBFNC collegiate fund graduate school. CBFNC has seminary trained These life passages are profound campus missionaries serving on engagement; and and, in many instances, overshadow the several of the state campuses along Share names of students in your education that we send young adults to with outreach to some of the family, church, and community college to acquire. What we often fail to community colleges in the area. We acknowledge or even realize is that all also partner with historically Baptist who are on NC campuses. of these concerns, questions, and hopes campuses to offer retreats and mission are theological in nature and require opportunities. We work with local space with the help of someone trained to assist them. congregations in two ways, assisting them in connecting In recent years, due to budget restraints, mainline churches with students on local campuses and offering ways to remain have too often underestimated and undervalued the importance connected to their homegrown students. of ministry and mission to young adults and collegiate Our prayer is that all CBFNC Baptists understand and value engagement. College is not only the transitional time our the role of campus missions as an integral part of our overall children and students can personally claim their faith, but it is mission and to understand that every church is a campus church. the perfect time to introduce the multitude of students who Collegiate ministry looks expensive on paper, but it pales in have never had a church family to a relationship with Christ. comparison to the cost we pay by not equipping, calling out, Contrary to conventional wisdom, young adults are open to and connecting with the unreached students on our campuses. God’s engagement in their lives. Increasingly, young adults do Collegiate ministry is a mission of grace and hope living into the not know of a place where it is safe to explore “purpose of life Christian Gospel by seeing the souls of our best and brightest, questions” with a Christian lens that gives both space and time and being willing to do what it takes to reach this people group. to do so. This reality is equally true for those raised in the local Thanks to CBFNC, we have the will and the passion to church and those brand new to exploring Christian faith. continue to offer this hope to our future generations. The Gathering – July/August 2018 • 9

CBFNC July/August 2018  

July/August 2018 issue of The Gathering from the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship of North Carolina

CBFNC July/August 2018  

July/August 2018 issue of The Gathering from the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship of North Carolina