USA (MNN) ― Last weekend, dozens of sorority sisters and fraternity brothers gathered in Long Island, New York to hear about the real Jesus.
It was part of InterVarsity Christian Fellowship's Greek Conference circulation. This was the first Greek Conference to be held in Long Island, and only the second exclusively for that northeastern region of the States.
The conference was filled with fun, dancing, training, learning and talking as students engaged each other in spiritual discussion. Conference speaker Lauren Mann led sessions on who Jesus Christ really was.
In an interview before the conference, Mann told Mission Network News, "The Northeast is an interesting culture group. It's really post-Christian, very similar to the West Coast, where a lot of students don't grow up with any church background--or if they do have a church background, it's usually been hurt in some way from having a negative experience."
Sure enough, Greek IV's Eric Holmer says students either thought this way or frequently ran into people who do. "They did express that the sentiment on their campus is this skepticism, or the prevailing thought is on their campus, ‘If you want me to believe something, you're going to have to prove it to me.'"
Over the weekend, Holmer says students were the ones who were able to actually share their stories of God's work in their lives and on their campuses. Small group time allowed them to go even deeper with who Christ is.
By Sunday, seven students had accepted Christ, and several more were thinking much more seriously about these issues.
The conference was more than a time to justify Christ to nonbelievers, though. Christians were mutually encouraged by their time, affirming that it's possible to be Greek and be Christian, an idea that is rarely given credence.
Believing students were encouraged to go back to their sororities and fraternities and begin Bible studies and small groups, but mainly, to live out Christ's love.
"The difference is when they can actually show the love of Jesus, and not just speak about it or help people reinforce their stereotypes, but actually love sacrificially, and really love the people in their fraternity and sorority house," says Holmer. "Love like that will stand out in the Greek system."
The challenges faced by these students are many. Many at the conference were the only Christians in their sorority or fraternity, and some were the only Christian Greeks on their campus. All of them know that it's not easy to be a believer in the Greek system, and yet they desperately want to reach these overlooked brothers and sisters with the Gospel.
Pray that the students who attended the conference would not be discouraged as they return to their campuses. Pray in fact that this weekend would have set a tone for the rest of the year, and that Christ would come alive in their Greek systems. Pray also for the seven students who accepted Christ and the others who are considering Him for the first time; pray for genuine transformation and for growthe in their love for the Lord.
InterVarsity has been a beacon of hope on college campuses for decades. To learn more about their work, visit intervarsity.org.