GUEST POST: The Gift of Campus Ministry January 24, 2023

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University ministry is very dear to my heart. It was one of the first ministries God allowed Tammy and me to be involved in years ago when we first started serving in Knoxville. As we labored on the campus of the University of Tennessee, the Lord taught me so much about the mission field in our back door, and how effective evangelism of college students can literally touch the world. Kyle Austin got that same burden while studying and serving at Crown College. It is a joy that God has led him to concentrate on this needed ministry. He understands the local church and is helping pastors and people reach their local college and university campuses for Christ. We are excited to share the following article that he has written. If you would like to read more on the history of university ministry, I would recommend For Christ and the University as a good place to start. – SP

Have you ever experienced something that made you want to pinch yourself to make sure you were not dreaming? There are times in campus ministry when I feel like I need to pinch myself to be sure it is all real. My wife and I have had the privilege to serve in many different areas of ministry over the years but the last eleven years of reaching college students on secular university campuses have been absolutely amazing!

The opportunity to reach and impact young people who are soaking up everything around them like a sponge while making life-altering decisions is priceless. We get to personally guide students’ pursuit of truth in a world that denies there is any truth. It is so encouraging to have a student who we have worked with for months return from winter break so excited to tell us he had called on Jesus Christ as his Savior at home. How can you not love witnessing an international student who was Buddhist bow to their knees in the middle of a busy hallway in the Student Union to call on Jesus Christ to save them?

We are honored to serve in campus ministry because of how God connected us with a student who was planning to commit suicide but the connection with the campus ministry completely changed his plan. The opportunities are endless to disciple new believers in their newfound faith answering questions and providing biblical direction in their journey. There is excitement to work with so many Christian students who attend a secular campus yet do not drop out of church or forsake their faith. The ministry to students doesn’t end at graduation but in many ways has just begun. There have been many opportunities to be a part of wedding ceremonies, be in the delivery room with a new mom, or provide continued counsel and guidance throughout their next seasons of life.

We love this ministry because every year God brings a brand new freshman class to reach which multiplies our opportunities many times over. The opportunity that the college campus offers to the local church to reach the world is mind-blowing! Close to a million international students from every country in the world walk on the campuses. The next school teachers, doctors, lawyers, political leaders, journalists, bankers, and workers in many other vocations in America attend the campuses. These students are not the church of tomorrow, they are the church of today! These are the leaders in America that will influence our culture. If we want to reach and impact all aspects of our society then we must reach the students on secular college campuses! We do it by reaching one student and one campus at a time. Reach the campus and you reach the world!

Are you interested in what you and your church could do in reaching students with the Gospel? Collegians for Christ is a local church ministry that has been established to help your church start, grow, and maintain an effective ministry on your campus by providing the necessary training and resources. You can get more information and pick up a copy of the book, Launching Point, which is all about reaching the college campus here.

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