If you’re new to the blog, you’ll notice that while I’m on a big Road Trip, I happily springboard from what I’m learning along the way. Not every day – but plenty. Today is one such day.
Occasionally I run across “Special Topics” connected to the world of college ministry which, if addressed, could make a huge impact on our field. And of course, anything that impacts our field impacts the whole world.
Because our field, the field (or “profession” or “vocation”) of college ministry impacts the whole world. (That goes without saying, right?)
Here are two such field-changing, world-changing areas:
1. Helping churches see the immediate usefulness of the “products” we’re turning out.
Ryan Lindsey, Christian Challenge director at CSU-Pueblo, got me thinking about this yesterday. He described actually approaching local pastors and explaining to them something along the lines of,
Since these young adults served on my ministry team, they’ve been well-trained in several key tasks. Now that they’ve graduated college and are in your church, please don’t simply assume you should stick them in the Youth department or Childrens’ ministry, or wait ’til they have gray hair to let them serve as Deacons. They have done solid, committed ministry work… they’ll be disillusioned quickly if you now ask them simply to sit in a pew ’til they’re 35.
If that idea somehow spread like wildfire among the churches of our country, then (1) they would more highly value our work, (2) the Transition Out of students to the “real world” would go better, and (3) the number of younger leaders in our churches would increase drastically, which leads to all sorts of other benefits!
2. Building a better understanding of what Christian Unity means within the campus ministry community on a given campus.
As I discussed some at the Blogference and as I’ve discussed not once but three times with college ministers I’ve met in the last two days, a practical understanding of unity-among-college-ministries largely alludes us. From what I’ve seen, “overshooting” or “undershooting” on this score is far more prevalent than finding unity in ways that actually turn out well. If someone did the hard work of investigating that problem, researching the highs and lows of individual campus histories in that regard, or gathering data from those who have learned in similar contexts (foreign missions, for example)… any of those steps would drastically impact our field.
Any takers? Anybody want to write a paper, start a project, or otherwise change the world in one of these ways?
Posted from the Lees’ house (my host home for the Ascent Conference), Longmont, CO
Road Trip 14 recap, Day 2
new states: Colorado (#3)
new campuses: Colorado State University – Pueblo (#4), Air Force Academy (#5)
yesterday: great visits to the above campuses, as well as a personal tour of the Navigators HQ; then night one of the Ascent Conference for (mostly) church-based college ministers
today: all day at the Ascent Conference!