Two years ago in May 2013, a visionary Seton Hall student introduced himself to me at the weekly Cru Bible study at New Jersey City University. He emphatically declared his desire to launch a Christ-centered evangelistic movement at Seton Hall.
His name was Joshua Rodriguez (above left), and I had the privilege of coaching and preparing Josh for ministry in the fall 2013 semester. With your and my staff team’s prayers behind us, I met with Josh, praying that the Holy Spirit would open a door and bring more Christian laborers to help us. And He did.
Almost immediately, students Damaris Pichardo (above center), Bryan Perez (above right) & Browlyn Marquez joined in. Together, we covertly held weekly Bible studies, evangelistic outreaches and other functions.
I say “covertly” because in the past, Seton Hall rejected Cru from formal membership. At one point in the past (before Jenn and I were on staff), a student leader was severely warned NOT to pursue establishing a movement.
Despite past setbacks, our fantastic four ploughed ahead. In the spring 2014 semester, Josh eloquently presented to the student government about why they should allow Cru. They said yes! But with one caveat: we had to get approval from the Director of Campus Ministry, who quickly shot us down. We were discouraged, but we prayed and trusted God!
Fast forward one year and things have now taken a turn for the best. After months of pursuing a face-to-face meeting with the Director, our current student leaders, Browlyn and Damaris, finally got the chance on May 7, 2015 at 9:00 am! Fearing rejection, they were surprised by the Director’s encouraging tone! He explained his fears about allowing a (mainly) Protestant group on a Catholic campus. Browlyn and Damaris listened and articulately explained Cru’s vision about being interdenominational.
After listening to our students, the Director gave his approval! And the ball is now rolling for our formal recognition at Seton Hall! Praise Jesus!! As a Cru staff member, I will need to work out some details. I’ll need to be under the Campus Ministry’s authority and attend minister meetings, but I am so thankful we now have a greater opportunity to share message of Jesus even more widely at Seton Hall! Our exemplary student leaders will forever remember this experience and the legacy they have now begun at their school.
This is why we love college ministry. Jesus gets to be proclaimed. Students grow in steps of faith and maturity! And God ultimately gets glory as we seek to make the name of Jesus known! Thank you all for praying faithfully! ALL glory and credit to Jesus.