From chapel services to Ngages, and NED Talks, there are multiple ways in which students can reach the required 28 Christian formation credits per semester. The most recent addition to these types of services and gatherings which provide Christian formation credits is a group called Alpha.
Alpha is gathering of people who value studying the foundations of the Christian Faith in an open and unintimidating environment. Led by Kristin Brouwer, leader of discipleship in Campus
Ministry, and Mark DeYounge, dean of Christian formation, this series began on Saturday, Feb. 2. The group will continue to meet once a week over the next six weeks to discuss topics such as the purpose we as humans were made, how we can live out our purpose and how we can help others discover their purpose in the advancement of the kingdom.
The main purpose of this group is to engage in conversation with peers and faculty members who have various viewpoints and understandings of what makes someone a Christian. The beautiful thing about this group of people is that participants are encouraged to engage in whatever way suites them best, rather it be by bringing their own thoughts into the conversation, or by simply listening attentively.
Alpha is unique in the sense that it is a much more intimate setting compared to something such as chapel or a NED Talk. Only those who apply and are accepted into the program. The reasoning behind this is that when Brouwer and DeYounge first had the vision for this group, they wanted to make sure it was a place where people felt safe to share their thoughts. Although sign-ups for Alpha are already closed for the 2023 spring semester, anyone who is interested in this program is highly encouraged to considering applying for it in the spring semester of 2024. As mentioned earlier, by participating in Alpha, students receive Christian formation credits. The only exception that comes with this is that students are required to attend at least six of the eight meetings in order to receive any Christian formation credits. This rule is in place so that the students who were selected to become members of this group honor the leader’s decision and so that they can get the most out of an incredible experience to grow in the knowledge of their faith.