Religion-based clubs meet students’ needs

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Religion-based clubs meet students’ needs

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As much as Calvin University’s 2019-20 religious clubs are here for the religion and philosophy majors, they are also here for the engineering, biology and undecideds. 

These religious clubs seek to offer a safe and respectful environment for dialogue while tackling some tough issues to individuals of all religious and nonreligious interests, backgrounds and faiths.

Club president Nick Raymond emphasizes that the Apologetics Club is there for everyone — for those who enjoy discussing systematic theology or for those who seek to find an answer for their neighbor when asked, “Why did my son have to get sick?” 

Although science and religion often appear in opposition to some, ScARF seeks to reconcile the two. This club offers a combination of lectures, presentations and open discussions to explore more deeply both science and religion and how they may intersect. 

The Science and Religion Forum (ScARF) also emphasizes that their club is for individuals in all stages of belief. Co-president Nathanael Kazmierczak says ScARF is there to “meet people where they’re at.” 

Re-igKnight, lead by students Yaa Antwi and Nana Ama Mensah Asante, intends to bring healing to “us, our land, our campus, and community.”

Re-igKnight offers a monthly worship service in the Calvin Seminary Chapel for anyone looking to cry out, praise, seek or find God.

Founded officially just this year, the newest religious club on campus is the Calvin Interfaith Alliance. The Calvin Interfaith Alliance hopes to make religious and non-religious minorities feel advocated for on campus through events and interactions that encourage interfaith discussions and learning.

Calvin Interfaith Alliance club president Samiur Rahman encouraged students to just show up. You may not know when you first come how you fit in or can help, but Rahman says, “your presence is enough.”

Inspired in part by the Service-Learning Center, the Calvin Interfaith Alliance seeks to bring the SLC’s mission to “pursue God’s shalom” inward by providing a peaceful place for dialogue open to all religious and non-religious minorities at Calvin. Calvin Interfaith Alliance also hopes to engage the broader Calvin community through events such as trainings for parents and professors on how to approach minority religious students.   

The Apologetics Club, through open discussion and speakers, equips individuals to fulfill the calling of 1 Peter 3:15: “Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give a reason for the hope you have.” Further information on these clubs as well as ways to get in contact with their leadership or through social media, visit https://calvin.edu/offices-services/student-organizations/organizations-list.html.