The question is often posed to me, “What are the biggest challenges of being a campus minister?”
And I often skip over my #1 challenge because I think people are looking more for answers like:
- the pluralistic environment of campus ministry
- the transient nature of young adults
- the high degree of authenticity which college students require
- etc, etc
But my #1 challenge is certainly financial sustainability. Obviously, not all campus ministers have to deal with this particular issue. Those in church-based college ministry often receive a consistent paycheck and have a budget for programming etc. That is not to say that all of my campus ministry peers who receive a salary from the organization are totally exempt from this pressure. Some may not be raising support for their individual salary, but they are expected to find new streams of fiscal resources to sustain ministry to the college and university campuses they engage.
Although I have posted previously about the benefits of this model of campus ministry (especially the partnering model which the CCO uses), I would be lying if I said the constant stress of being under-funded isn’t my #1 challenge. And after two years of working pretty hard towards becoming fully-funded…we have yet to close the gap. The financial anxiety of raising support is the ONLY thing that could keep me from enjoying this calling for the next 20 years!
However, in the midst of this challenge…we celebrate God’s faithfulness! The fact that God has provided for us during the last two years in such a way that we were able to buy a home this past summer is bordering miraculous. We continue to trust, that in God’s timing, we will reach our goal of being 100% funded. Often, when we least expect it…God brings someone across our path who wants to give $100, $50, or $30/month towards our ministry of transforming college students in Cincinnati. When that happens, God’s ability to provide never ceases to blow us away.
If you’d like to be one of those who partner with us to put that piece of the ministry in place, click on the $upport link above.