Peter Kenny, Dublin Team Leader, writes:
What if, this week, you were to undergo a change in nearly every area of your life? Different house, different city, different friends. What would that be like? Add a few other changes: new subjects to learn, new college to navigate, new culture to experience. All these changes would surely beg the questions, Who am I? What defines me? If nobody knows where I’m from, who my friends are, or who I’ve been for my whole life, does that mean that I can change fundamental aspects of my identity with relative ease? This describes the experience that tens of thousands of young adults are currently having on our third-level campuses. Many will be markedly different people by the time they finish.
For the Christian students who you know, this reality presents both a danger and an opportunity. The danger for them is that they begin to wonder are they Christians at all. If so many aspects of their identities are fluid, maybe they could identify themselves as something other than Christian at this time. That would certainly be the easier choice and, indeed, has been the route taken by many in the secular environment on campus. The opportunity for the Christian is that, though all is change, they gain a deeper knowledge and experience of Christ as their unchanging Rock.
The Christian Union is a place where Christians from all sorts of local churches and backgrounds may be encouraged and nurtured in their Christian identity as they undergo this massive life-transition among their peers. As this new academic year begins, please continue praying for and encouraging the students who you know – and for the Christian Unions as a whole – that they would have many opportunities to grow in their faith and share the good news of Jesus with their friends.