Campus religious life is making changes.
The largest change is that Wednesday at the Wesley, a free lunch for the campus that was provided every Wednesday in Watson Lounge in Bishop W. Angie Smith Chapel, is now only hosted the first Wednesday of every month. The first one of the year was Sept. 2 in the same location, and Sodexo still provides food for the event.
Another change is that a third intern was added to run their social media accounts to involve more students in religious life activities. Hannah Lampi, religion senior, was named the third intern, along with Michael Horn, religion senior, and Morgan Mitchell, religion junior.
“I’m excited to help other students connect,” Lampi said. “I want them to find a church home away from home, and when they feel lost, I want to be a face to help them connect.”
Lampi is also in charge of Evensong worship service at 8 p.m. Mondays in the lower level of Bishop W. Angie Smith Chapel, which is changing to involve more student leadership in the service.
Evensong is incorporating a sermon series called “Engaged Faith: How Beliefs Fuel How You Respond to the Work.” After it is finished, there will be a sermon series where big questions about faith can be addressed, allowing more dialogue and an accepting place where students can ask the questions they don’t know how to ask, Lampi said. Evensong includes pizza before and after each service.
Lampi said she looks forward to incorporating more styles of worship this year.
There also will be a freshman Bible study led by students for students, but the Rev. Dr. Rodney Newman, director of religious life, said he is unsure when that will begin.
Other than these changes, the Wesley Center will host its normal activities and officials encourage student involvement.
There will be three service opportunities this semester, comprising of:
– Habitat for Humanity, where students help build a house for someone in need,
– Circle of Care, where the United Methodist Church supports families with foster children, and
– Alternative Gift Market, where students can give gifts through the United Methodist Committee on Relief for small dollar amounts.
Habitat for Humanity will be Oct. 3 and the other two probably will be in November, but Newman was unsure of the exact dates.
Newman said they are looking for volunteers for the service opportunities, as well as Wednesday at the Wesley and Evensong.
Newman said volunteering for religious life activities or service opportunities is important because it’s one more way to engage fellow students and the community, it encourages spiritual development, it provides the tools and training to be student and servant leaders, and it can help students connect with God more effectively.
Although it is for religious life, students do not have to be religious to participate.
“We want to welcome people of different faiths or no faith to participate,” Newman said.
Any student interested in volunteering or with questions may email Newman at firstname.lastname@example.org. Students also may follow OCUWesleyCenter on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram for updates on activities.