On October 4 at Hope we are celebrating Campus Ministry at the University of Calgary and Mount Royal. Led by Pastor Margaret Propp in collaboration with other team members and ministry partners, this is an incredibly dynamic ministry that offers vital support to university students. Innovative programming like drum circles, women’s circles, theology discussion groups, and simple suppers offer spaces for students to explore their spirituality and form community with others in a safe and inclusive environment.
Campus ministry in Calgary, like similar ministries on campuses across the country, nurtures young adults’ faith at a time of huge growth and change in their lives. In addition to being a ministry of care and outreach, Campus Ministry benefits the church by being an incubator for the future leaders of church and society.
My own journey towards ordained ministry in the church was nurtured by my participation in the campus ministry programs of Augustana University. Having already spent two years at the Canadian Lutheran Bible Institute (itself an incubator of leaders in the church), I came to university already interested in faith and spirituality. In my first year I was asked by Pastor Lyle McKenzie (who came from this congregation of Hope!) to serve as a student chaplain. I was honoured by his request and happy to participate with the other student chaplains and residence assistants in bringing Bible studies, worship opportunities, and support groups to our fellow students. Lyle became a model and mentor for me in pastoral ministry. My ideas and ideals about worship were formed permanently by my experience at Augustana with Lyle and his incredible assistant (the title doesn’t nearly describe the importance of her role), Robyn Simpson Mohr. I am deeply grateful for the opportunity that Campus Ministry gave me to dip a toe in the waters of leadership, and the encouragement and support Lyle and Robyn gave me along my journey.
It’s wonderful to me to have the opportunity here in Calgary to give back and support the ministry carried on by Lutheran Campus Ministry YYC. This congregation has been a financial supporter, has offered our space for fundraising events, and has had members serve as board members. Many thanks to the members of Hope who have contributed their time and talents to supporting this important ministry.
We wish Pastor Margaret and her team every blessing as they continue their work of ministry on Calgary campuses.
Photo of the Faith and Life Lounge outside of the Augustana chapel, where so much of Campus Ministry's life and events take place.