As Easter Sunday approaches, students explore faith in Gregory Plaza

Savannah Jobman

Large boards posing spiritual questions caught students’ attention on Monday, and some took the time to read or write on them in the middle of bustling Speedway.  
Rez Week, an annual weeklong event leading up to Easter Sunday, the Christian holiday celebrating Jesus’ resurrection, hosts a 24-hour prayer and hospitality tent with free coffee and other treats. Every night at 7 p.m., Rez Week invites students to worship and listen to a Christian sermon.

Campus Renewal, a campus ministry, hosts the event with the help of over 100 volunteers. Biochemistry senior Eucharist Kun, a member of Campus Renewal, said this allows different denominations to unite for outreach — a rare opportunity.

“Beside our differences, we all believe in the core tenets of Christianity — that Jesus died for our sins and rose from the dead to bring us salvation,” Kun said. “This is just an invitation to celebrate that, to spark conversations with people who may not know about Christ.”

As students stopped to read the boards, volunteers struck up conversations about faith and offered prayer.

“I wouldn’t say this is a ‘Christian college,’ so I think the environment really forces you to ask those questions for yourself,” said Clinton Scroggins, the director of Campus Renewal. “I think it’s a real opportunity to have people engage with (questions like) ‘What’s really real in life? Where am I going? What’s my purpose?’”
A three-man band played worship music in front of Gregory Gym. As several students walked by with headphones in and heads down, psychology senior Lindsey Collins stopped to take a video of the band.

“Sometimes it can feel like there’s not a lot of Christians on campus,” Collins said. “I’ve even been called out in class for being a Christian. At times I felt a little ostracized, so it’s cool to see that there are other people on campus that love God.”

Human resources junior Austin Lee said although he is not religious, he finds comfort in the public displays of faith.

“They’re not forcing you to like their culture or worship or anything,” Lee said. “But if you’re inclined to, you’re welcome to include yourself in it or not.”

Collins said her experience at Rez Week last year prompted her to come back.

“When I came, I was really discouraged, but when I left, I was really encouraged,” Collins said. “It made me feel like I wasn’t alone.”