USA (MNN) — InterVarsity Christian Fellowship regards the university campus as its mission field.
However, on the average college campus, opening dialogue on difficult issues is not only difficult, it can be hostile.
That's one reason the Stanford Chapter brought in renowned geneticist Francis Collins to lecture. Collins proposes a new synthesis, a new way to think about an active, caring God who created mankind through evolutionary processes. He calls this BioLogos – life through the Word.
Collins is best known for heading the 1993-2000 Human Genome Project. His work there resulted in mapping a blueprint of human DNA.
In his address, he made a compelling argument for the compatibility of faith and science. InterVarsity member Kyle Heath: "Our goal was essentially to foster dialogue. This is an area where scientists don't often want to go. I think one of Collins' quotes that really jumps out at me is, "'One of the great tragedies of our time is this impression that's been created that science and religion have to be at war.'"
Dialogue has been cropping up not only in the labs but also the dorms. Heath says in the aftermath, it's a whole new evangelistic opportunity with international impact. "If you want to do international missions, there's no better place than a large research institute like Stanford. Frankly, in some of these research labs, Americans are the minority. These will be the leaders in the world, and they had a chance to hear the Gospel presented and the message that faith and science are quite in harmony."
The purpose of InterVarsity Christian Fellowship/USA is to establish and advance at colleges and universities witnessing communities of students and faculty who follow Jesus as Savior and Lord: growing in love for God, God's Word, God's people of every ethnicity and culture and God's purposes in the world.