The hope in this ministry is to view the college as a ‘mission field.’
• It’s not about getting PEOPLE to fill the PEWS.
• It’s not about getting PEOPLE to give us PLEDGES.
IU is a place in which there are PEOPLE that can be changed by encountering God’s PRESENCE in us.
(From a report to the two PC(USA) churches in Bloomington about the kind of perspective necessary for campus ministry by the IU Campus Ministry task force)
I work with college students. Even though I don’t look it any more, I feel like I’m still in college. It’s a strange juxtaposition – to be married and an ordained minister now for almost ten years, a mother to three young children, and still feel like a kid.
Three years ago we moved to Bloomington, Indiana, for my husband’s call and it happened to be in an enormous, bustling college town. Basketball is huge here with a large stake in music and the arts, a stellar business school and the typical state school population – it’s impressive. I remember feeling a little lost in the beginning wondering what God could be calling me to here, and then looking around, thinking, I could do ministry with IU students.
I stopped saying doing ministry to or for people a while ago because it didn’t seem accurate and honest.
Because these last two years I’ve been ministered to in countless ways by these “young” people. I’ve ministered alongside these “young” adults to other students and families. I’ve learned, listened and loved through their stories and our relationships.
But, thankfully there are some stellar college/campus ministry gurus, and we started some conversations awhile back as I tried to create a framework that would be rooted in simple anchors and principles but open enough to be malleable and flexible to the transience piece of this kind of ministry. For the series, some of the writers include Mark Elsdon and Erica Liu of Pres House, Andy Cooke of the Presbyterian Student Center at UGA and Jamie Haskins of Westminster College in Fulton, Missouri. This specific ministry is associated with UKIRK and received support from 1001 Worshiping Communities. These conversations are important, and I’m excited to use this space as a venue for dialogue not only about millennials, but about ministry to, for and especially with them.
Mihee Kim-Kort is a teaching elder but mostly stay-at-home mom to twins, Desmond and Anna, and a third named Oswald (I should mention the fourth named Ellis, our boxer dog). The children graciously allow her to also work part-time in a ministry with college students as well as serve on various boards and committees. She is a writer and blogger (www.miheekimkort.com). She and husband Andy, who is also a teaching elder, live in Bloomington, Indiana.