I am a college junior transferring into a new college, and I’ve been thinking a lot about change. Change is something we have all experienced at some point in our lives. For most the major change happens when we graduate from High School and we move to a new school, usually some distance from home. With this type of change comes many different emotions; nervousness, anxiousness, excitement, uneasiness and the list continues. Having gone through this change once I figured the second time I had to go through it would be easier but I was wrong . I actually feel more anxious then the first time.
Growing up as a PK (Pastor’s Kid) I have always had a faith centered up bringing. In many ways the church was my second family and I became very close and dependent on both my parents and my church family. Leaving the comforts of my home and families was extremely hard in the fall of 2007. I really didn’t know how I would be able to survive without them and their constant support. I haven’t ever gone “church shopping” in my life and I have never had to look for other Christians to hang out with; they were always just there and around. Walking on to Le Moyne College campus my first day as a freshman was terrifying. I didn’t know who to reach out to, to gain that small comfort of home. Being a Roman Catholic college they catered to that denomination. I remember talking to my advisor about finding a church to go to since I was spiritually being drained and she told me there was only one Presbyterian Church near by. Since I didn’t have a car she said she would get me in contact with someone that went there so I could get a ride but unfortunately I had fallen through the cracks and was forgotten until it was too late. It was just past mid semester and I hadn’t been involved in any type of religious activity and I was at my breaking point. I remember calling home in tears to my father who was ready to call the campus minister to come to my rescue and begging him to let me come home and not to call her. At that point the campus minister and I just didn’t connect. She seemed more concerned with those who went to chapel, which was like a Roman Catholic service, and wasn’t as interested in those who didn’t and strived for something different. That night I decided to not return for the spring semester and after finals I went home spiritually broken and started to pick up the pieces. My church family was excellent and all helped me gain my spirituality back.
Now it’s been a year and half since Le Moyne and I have graduated from my community college (where I connected with a college group at a local church) and have to go through change again. I am not going to sit here and lie and say I am not anxious. I actually really scared and uneasy for the fear of the past repeating itself. I am afraid of falling through the cracks and not finding “Where I belong” at SUNY Brockport. My prayer is that the campus minister is open minded to all denominations and is willing make an effort to make me feel a part of their religious group gatherings. Many think the students should and will come to them if they want to but in reality many students don’t know where they belong. They don’t know where to seek help or who to go to gain that sense of home. I wish when I was getting ready to go to Le Moyne the Campus ministry office sent me something or made themselves present during meal times. I would have been more prone to talk if they approached me. I was already overwhelmed with so many new things that I wanted someone to find me and show interest in my involvement. Since it has been year and half I have grown up and matured into a deeper Christian. I am prepared now to look for the campus ministry the first week and get myself involved. I have already scouted out a couple churches I want to look into and see if they fit my needs and if none do I will rely on my campus ministry to help me out. Even though I have a plan set this time I am still nervous and wish I had someone to “hold my hand” and tell me where to go. I recently heard a statistic that 3 out of 4 Christian students fall through the cracks when they get to school. That is ridiculous if you ask me and I wonder how it can be changed. This semester I am determined to find ways to get the number to zero. Someone isn’t doing there job and I want to be one that help pull those who have fallen through the cracks out. It’s hard to go through change, especially alone. I think campus ministries needs to put themselves out there and be noticeable. Be the group they run to, to find home, strength, peace and love. You could be the answer to an anxious student’s prayer.