College Students and Faith Trends

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Posted 19 Jun 2013 in Blogs, Friends, GCM, Illini Life, Jesus, Ministry, News, Spirituality

A good friend and co-laborer of mine, Alan shared this article with me. I found it interesting – not surprisingly because it’s a topic near to my heart and calling – college students and their faith journey. The article claims that college isn’t quite the “faith shredder” it’s been made out to be; claiming students are 2.7 times more likely to say their beliefs were strengthened in college rather than weakened. A researcher speculates why this might be:

kid-prayingProfessor Smith observes three primary and very interesting reasons why the university is not the faith-shredder we imagine it to be:

1)    The increase in presence and effectiveness of campus-based ministries like Campus Crusade, InterVarsity, and Young Life.

2)    The increase of relativism and the decline of strict scientism, which allows for discussion of faith and spiritual speculation, similar to what Paul experienced at the Aeropagus.

3)    An increase in committed evangelical and Catholic faculty at secular universities in America who can serve as an encouragement and balance for Christian students.

Point number one is the most affirming to Amy and I. The work we’re called to do and giving our lives to is making an impact. Campus ministry is to blame for strengthening the faith of those that come to college. Now we just need to see numbers on students coming to faith in college. We have our own experience to measure against but would love to see wider stats on what is happening on college campuses.

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