As someone who is always looking for new and exciting ways to explore and deepen my faith, I was very grateful to have had the opportunity to do just that this past week.
And better yet, it was right on campus.
Last Friday, Gannon University’s Campus Ministry introduced a new ecumenical event to campus: TGIF — Thank God it’s Friday.
The event took place in our own Mary, Seat of Wisdom Chapel, where students gathered to listen to a powerful speaker and worship together, followed by dinner and fellowship in the lower lounge.
The evening kicked off with an inspiring witness given by student leader Max Kerr about his personal faith journey and some of the major influencers and experiences that have shaped his relationship with God.
His openness about his unique story and his take on trust and what a relationship with God truly means gave the students in attendance a lot to think about.
This was followed by beautiful worship music played and sung by several talented Gannon students, providing an open space for all who attended TGIF to worship however they felt comfortable, whether that be belting the lyrics with hands raised or quietly reflecting as the music played.
During this time, students were also offered the option to meet with a “prayer partner,” which included campus ministers Brent Heckman and Emily Muntean, if they wanted or needed to pray with someone privately or discuss anything they were thinking or feeling following the witness.
Following the worship service, students were invited to the lower lounge to enjoy a pasta dinner together and engage in community and fellowship with one another.
This allowed time for students to reflect on the words of the speaker, their worship experience or just enjoy the company of those around them as they shared a meal together.
Overall, this event offered a little bit of everything, from personal reflection to prayer to wonderful worship music, and of course, some delicious food.
It was a powerful, meaningful and entertaining experience and, quite simply, it was a lot of fun.
For students who are interested in growing in their faith, want to try something new, or just want something fun to do on a Friday night, I recommend TGIF.
There will be at least two more TGIF gatherings this semester, one on March 22 and another on April 26, and I highly encourage anyone and everyone to come check it out for themselves.
Speakers for those evenings will be announced prior to the events.
If you have any questions about TGIF or you just want to know more, contact one of the leaders, Bianca Morris, at [email protected] or Veronica Flacke at [email protected]
Feel free to reach out to any of the student leaders as well, including myself, Adam Badgley, Michael Guo, Mitchell Pulleo and Kevin Paton for any more information.
With that being said, I can’t wait to see you on March 22.