a niche worth noticing

As you know, I’m fascinated by the many differences between “campus tribes.” One of those differentation points comes whenever our country’s educational system and our country’s military intersect.

I had the neat chance recently to meet a college minister at the Air Force Academy (fittingly, today’s Campus Tribe of the Day), and I met another guy on the Brazil trip who used to serve at the Naval Academy. I’ve got a Campus Crusade friend at the Citadel. And I spent a lot of time around the prestigious Corps of Cadets while attending Texas A&M.

On this Memorial Day, I want to point out a special niche that can be found on plenty of campuses. And on plenty of those campuses, the citizens of this niche might – because of schedule, identity, and/or openness to certain outreach – be worth considering for special ministry. Or even if you simply make a special effort to draw them into your present ministry, I bet you find many of the men and women in this niche to be particularly committed, particularly service-minded, particularly noble.

That niche, of course, is the “military-minded” – whether this is working with ROTC members, those on the GI bill, or even reaching onto campuses that have a large (or fully) military presence.

Anybody serving in the sorts of capacities I mentioned at the top would probably be able to provide tips a’plenty – so if you’re interested in that niche, no need to recreate the wheel: Ask someone who already IS invested.

(I also know Valor is the niche of Campus Crusade that reaches cadets and midshipmen, and The Navigators has a long history of impacting those in the military and those on campuses. Any other suggestions?)

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2 Comments

  1. Definitely a great niche to highlight. They’re probably more serious-minded than the rest of us, given the kind of work their students are preparing for!

    My brother-in-law was heavily involved with BSU at the Naval Academy. They seem to have a real strong presence there, and do a great job keeping up with alumni (I’ve read the newsletters).

  2. Having been in the military for 9 years now, I completely recognize the need to these young men and women. I had a campus pastor in college who was also a Navy Chaplain, he told me, ‘if you want to do some real ministry, do the chaplaincy.’ I have given this much thought as one of my next moves (within the national guard and my ministry). The majority of people in the military are 18-25 years old. You have 22 year old’s making life and death decisions every day! There is a HUGE need within this demographic to minister. I have seen so much hurt, stupidity and longing for direction in these military men and women. Thanks Benson for recognizing this area!

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