This past Thursday was move-in day for St. Cloud State University freshmen. Our Newman Center pastoral team greeted 450 of these young people and their families personally as they were arriving. And so, just like that, another year of campus ministry begins in earnest!
In the days of preparation for this time, our pastoral team came upon an acronym that will help us stay focused on our ministry here at Christ Church Newman Center. That acronym is: WhAM!
The word wham is, of course, used to describe the sound of a powerful impact. The purpose of our ministry here at the Newman Center is to make an impact on the lives of young women and men during the transitional years of college life. The impact is made ‘powerful’ when it is characterized by the encounter with Jesus Christ still living in the company of his disciples, the Church.
The WhAM method of ministry is:
Warming hearts—this emphasizes the need for encounter in a place of care, concern, and support. Ministry begins with a welcoming hospitality and the witness of a gracious and joyfully lived faith within our community.
Accompaniment—this speaks of formation in the life of discipleship, which happens as we walk with one another, learning and mentoring, witnessing to our life of faith.
Missionary disciples—this is the goal of our ministry, the formation of one another as missionary disciples, sent out in witness to God’s faithful, abiding love for us in word and deeds of service, healing and reconciliation.
By warming hearts, accompanying one another, and empowering for missionary discipleship, we live fully our mission as the Catholic Community on the campus of St. Cloud State University and for, as well, St. Cloud Technical and Community College.
What an incredible privilege to share the joy of the gospel with young men and women at such a transformational time of their lives! Mother Mary, seed of wisdom, pray for us!