January 24, 2011 —
Each week, students gather to learn about God and grow in their spirituality through a student-led group called Campus Crusade for Christ (Cru).
“We’re like a family,” Olivia Steffke, biology sophomore, said. “You come here, and people actually care and support you.”
“I feel at home,” Emily Kuiper, nursing junior, said, adding Cru is a “good community of people.”
SVSU’s Cru is part of an international group that promotes ministry in 191 countries. Their mission statement is to “launch spiritual movements by winning, building, and sending Christ-centered multiplying disciples.”
Carolyn Payne, literature and history senior, said that Cru is one of the largest campus ministries in the world, but it is small at SVSU because it was just started about five years ago.
Payne, part of the service team, said they like to call Cru a movement rather than a club. They plan on focusing on outreach and evangelism this semester. The service team is a group of students who are the elected leaders for the organization.
Laura Farrell, social work senior and part of the service team, said the format of the meeting is different each week. While some meetings are devoted to worship, others have been miniseminars or hosted guest speakers.
“We try to bring all the aspects of faith and worship,” she said.
She explained that the group is not a place for judgment and that everyone is welcome. It is a place to learn from each other.
“They can build into me, and I can build into them,” Farrell said.
This year, staff from Campus Crusade for Christ International have been involved with the SVSU chapter. They come from MidMichigan Cru, the Central Michigan University chapter. They come to SVSU once a week to provide guidance and meet with the service team. The staff is made up of fulltime missionaries employed by Cru.
Some of the staff will also be guest speakers this semester.
Farrell said that the service team looks for leaders based on their involvement and commitment to the group, as well as their spiritual maturity.
“We look for people who stand out spiritually and then challenge them,” she said.
In addition to meetings, Cru hosts Bible study groups throughout the week.
To strengthen relationships, the group engages in social activities such as going out to Denny’s after meetings.
Campus Crusade for Christ meets 8 p.m. Wednesdays in the Student Activities Room.