Urbana, Greek Ministry, Missions, Legal Issues, Alumni, Bible Study, From the President, Campus Ministry, Graduate Faculty Ministry, Evangelism

God Is Not Dead on Campus

Gordon Govier
April 21, 2014

The struggle between faith and doubt on college campuses is highlighted in the movie God Is Not Dead, which has been seen by surprisingly large audiences since its release one month ago today. For three weeks in a row, God Is Not Dead ranked in the top five movies, generating a financial return ten times its $4 million production budget.

But does its theme accurately reflect the climate confronted by InterVarsity in its campus ministry? A valid question, since InterVarsity is listed at the end of the movie among the groups which have gone to court to defend religious freedom on campus.

Adventures in Bible Study

Kathryn Brill
March 18, 2014

Reading the Bible is unlike reading any other book in the world. As the Word of God, the stories of the Bible are more than just intriguing or entertaining—they have the power to change our lives and bring us into closer relationship with God. Through the Bible study they lead together, Weber State University students Jordan Barbadillo and Michelle Frias have grown to love reading God’s Word in community and acting on what they hear.

The Power of the Word

For both Jordan and Michelle, their time in Weber’s InterVarsity chapter has transformed their view of Scripture. “I’ve fallen in love with the Word and constantly have to rely on its truth,” said Michelle. “Before college I had no idea that God wants to and can speak to us, but now I know how to hear him in Scripture.” Jordan has also found new significance in the Word of God that he hadn’t seen before: “After just the first year in InterVarsity, I got a glimpse of the depth of God’s Word.”

From Oreos to Justice

Lisa Rieck
March 11, 2014

“I never thought that marketing could free the oppressed,” said Sheeba Philip, Vice President of Global Marketing and Public Relations at International Justice Mission (IJM) and an InterVarsity alumna.

What she knew from experience was that good marketing could help the world fall in love all over again with Oreos and Chips Ahoy! brand cookies. For ten years Sheeba worked in the corporate world, serving as the Senior Director of the Global Treats Brand Platform for Mondelēz International and Kraft Foods, and as Global Marketing Director for Oreo, a $2 billion brand known in over 100 countries.

She had essentially reached the pinnacle of her career and was thriving in her work. Why would she choose to leave a great boss, exciting growth opportunities in the corporate world, and the chance to market the darling of the cookie world?

Connecting Multiethnicity to Chapter Growth

Gordon Govier
February 14, 2014

The first day of classes for the fall semester at Occidental College (Oxy) in Los Angeles was on August 28th, 2013, the 50th anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King Junior’s I Have a Dream speech. The speech was on everyone’s mind, as students re-enacted the March on Washington and a faculty panel discussed the March.

“The college wanted to highlight the intersection between race and spirituality, and so it gave us an opportunity to step right into the midst of that discussion,” said Campus Staff Member Drew Jackson. That night Drew helped lead a candlelight vigil on campus and spoke on Isaiah 40, a Scripture passage quoted by Dr. King in his speech.

Sharing the Gospel with Your Professor

The next morning the campus community had a further chance to discuss King’s legacy, race relations in America, and the gospel of Jesus Christ, as InterVarsity students manned the Hope Proxe right in the middle of campus.

Are You a Disciple for Life?

Lisa Rieck
February 7, 2014

What does it look like to experience God’s faithfulness and to love his purposes in the world in real time, over the long haul?

Though alumnus Neal Jordan would point to the lives of others as models—to classmates of his in the fifties who went on to serve in Africa or work with children in Appalachia or do lay ministry for international students—his own story offers a compelling picture of God’s faithful care and direction for his disciples over a lifetime. (Watch the video of Neal sharing at InterVarsity’s 2014 National Staff Conference below.)

The College Years: Growing in Mind and Heart

A college freshman at Cornell in 1950, Neal was hopeful. “Times were good,” he said. “After the deprivations of the Depression and of World War II, the focus was on the material. College men were optimistic that they could find good jobs.”

He Felt God Tug on His Heart

January 24, 2014

Gary Cowman had no interest in Africa when he left his hometown to attend California State University – Fullerton. He had grown up in Laguna Beach and intended to become an accountant. How did this future accountant end up spending the last 24 years in Kenya?  Just how God worked in the life of this InterVarsity student is reported in a story that appeared this week in the Laguna Beach Coastline Pilot.

There’s more to the story, in an article on InterVarsity’s Urbana website.

Photo by Don Leach, used by permission of the Laguna Beach Coastline Pilot.

Inside Radical Faith

Amy Hauptman
January 21, 2014

When your dad starts an underground church movement in your home country, it’s going to affect you.

Growing up overseas as an only child, Jeremy Lee witnessed his parents living out radical and sacrificial Christian faith in their home and in their workplaces. His dad started a Bible study at his workplace even though it was dangerous in their country to do so.  As more people joined and got involved in the Bible study, it eventually grew into an underground church movement.

“My family’s values were based around hospitality and servanthood,” said Jeremy. “My mom and dad were very comfortable opening our home to missionaries or friends—they believe that God’s blessings should not be taken for granted, but be utilized to serve others.”

When Jeremy was eight years old he dedicated his life to following Christ. But his faith was very “surface-level.”

Making Space for God’s Renewal

Kathryn Brill
January 15, 2014

The relationship between God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit—the Trinity—is a mystery that most of us will never come close to fully understanding. But the Trinity does show us something very clearly—community is at the center of the universe.

InterVarsity alumnus Michael Tso has been captivated by the mystery and beauty of the Trinity, “not so much as a doctrine, but as a way of living in community.” In a variety of places, times, and careers, Michael has placed true community—messy and difficult yet crucial—at the center of his life, and seen the ways it has transformed his life and the lives of those around him.

Discovering Community

Focusing on our Campus Mission

Gordon Govier
January 6, 2014

More than 1400 staff members from across the country gathered January 7-11, 2014 in St. Louis for our triennial National Staff Conference. The focus of the conference was on InterVarsity world changers, taken from InterVarsity’s Vision Statement: “To see students and faculty transformed, campuses renewed, and world changers developed.”

As attested by numerous stories on our website, students and faculty whose faith in Jesus Christ is planted and nurtured through the ministry of InterVarsity are called to change the world, and they respond. World changer stories were shared by video and by personal testimony, and are posted online by InterVarsity's Twentyonehundred Productions.

Christian Renewal in New York City

Gordon Govier
December 30, 2013

InterVarsity alumnus and former staff member Mac Pier is profiled in an article now appearing on the website A Journey Through NYC Religions. Pier’s role in networking New York City pastors and churches is seen as one key contributing factor in the resurgence of Christian faith in the nation’s largest city.

The article written by Melissa Kimiadi highlights Pier's dedication to breaking down barriers that had isolated churches from each other and hindered their mission of sharing the gospel message with their New York City neighbors.

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