College students need Jesus and they need loving support from fellow Christians. David Dorantes understands this. He the associate and college minister at Riverchase Church of Christ in Birmingham, AL. Here are some of his thoughts regarding campus ministry.
Why do you think campus ministry is important?
We’re loosing too many kids to the world and to generic deceptive religion. This is the time when they need someone to help them and explain to them the meaning of true Christianity. Most churches focus their budgets in teen ministries and children’s and women’s ministries. Sometimes there is something for the men, but rarely for college students. By doing this, they are telling college students that they are not important.
Of all the obstacles that college students deal with, what do you see as being the most prevalent?
Doubt, then worldliness then hypocrisy and I think also lack of fellowship with the brethren. They go to college thinking they’re alone. They are not!
Any resources you recommend for students at the university level?
Apologetics. Community involvement and church involvement. Be involved wherever you are. Keep studying the word of God and look for ways to help others.
Advice to youth ministers and parents as they prepare their child for college?
Don’t abandon them. They are on their own, they are starting adulthood, but some are not ready for that yet. Each child is different. Don’t look forward to getting rid of your child, don’t be talking about plans after they leave. Make plans to continue teaching them and guiding them. Help them transition into the next phase of their lives. It is a must that the college minister, the parents and the youth minister work together with each individual to make this transition possible.
David, a graduate of Heritage Christian University, has been in ministry for over 20 years. He has been at the Riverchase congregation for over 5 years, serving as the associate and college minister. He is married and has 3 children.