Higher Education and Campus Ministry are key, related concerns of the Eastern PA Conference and its entire denomination. Higher education has been part of the bedrock of United Methodism from its inception. We affiliate with campus ministries at four institutions in our region, and we are exploring relationships with others as well. Indeed, Campus Ministry is as much about relationships as religion. College students and churches benefit mutually from facilitated encounters as they learn, share and grow in Christ and in community. Campus Ministry can change lives, change churches and ultimately, change the world.
Please visit our HIGHER EDUCATION SCHOLARSHIPS & GRANTS webpage to learn more about higher education financial aid opportunities in and beyond our conference and denomination.
The Eastern PA Conference Board of Higher Education and Campus Ministry asks churches to observe Campus Ministry Sunday August 19 or on a more convenient Sunday from now through September. Churches are asked to receive a special offering to support conference-affiliated campus ministries.
Congregations involved in local campus ministries themselves may designate up to 50 percent of their voluntary, second-mile offerings to support those ongoing ministries. The rest should be forwarded to the Conference Office to aid in our conference-wide campus ministry efforts. Thank you!
By the Rev. Daniel Lebo
Coordinator of Spiritual Life at Lebanon Valley College (Annville, PA), and Pastor of Annville UMC
The Office of Spiritual Life at Lebanon Valley College is unique in providing opportunities for students from a variety of faith backgrounds to engage with other spiritually minded students on campus. This allows us to provide diversity in our programming.
Our monthly interfaith dialogues, coordinated with the religion and philosophy department on campus, are one example. Each session focuses on a particular topic and allows faith leaders from major world religions (Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, and Atheism) to speak for their communities and discuss similarities and differences in their traditions. Topics in the past school year included Death, Desire, Race and Religion, Faith and Reason, and Other Religions. Read more…
The General Board of Higher Education & Ministry’s Office of Loans and Scholarships celebrates the awarding of $5 million in financial aid to over 2,500 students in 2017. Among those students are many from the Eastern PA Conference. Our students benefit especially from denominational Special Sunday offerings that provide scholarships, such as United Methodist Student Day, which many churches will celebrate Sunday, Nov. 25 (2018). (Other sources of financial aid include gifts, annuities and endowments GBHEM has invested and administered for decades.)
We invite you to look over and celebrate this list of our 2017 student recipients who are active members of our churches. Their pastors should have received certificates to help their churches acknowledge them on UM Student Day. Why not contact their churches to invite recipients to come speak to your congregation and share their stories, their hopes and dreams, and their gratitude during the Thanksgiving or Christmas holidays? Or if you want help in reaching any recipient, email Marcie Bigord in the Loans and Scholarships office at email@example.com or call 615-340-7344.
“We have many applicants who did not receive a scholarship due to lack of funds,” writes Allyson Collinsworth, Executive Director of Loans and Scholarships. She urges churches to please support our UM students here and around the UMC with their offerings on UM Student Day and with other gifts. Meanwhile, UM students may apply for 2018 GBHEM scholarships online between Jan. 3 and March 7, 2018, at gbhem.org/scholarshipapplication. Student loans are also available at interest rates as low as 3.75% (lower than federal educational loan rates) with a creditworthy cosigner. Apply now.
Rev. David Piltz
Spiritual & Religious Life
James E. Marks Intercultural Center (JEMIC)
3225 Arch Street, Philadelphia, PA
Basement Level, Entrance on Arch Street
Open Door Christian Community, JEMIC Rm. 12 B
Rev. Daniel Lebo
101 N. College Avenue
Annville, PA 17003-1400
LVC Office of Spiritual Life
UM collegiate ministries are the missional presence of The United Methodist Church on college and university campuses around the world. Through a network of chaplaincies, Wesley Foundations, ecumenical ministries and church-based ministries, The United Methodist Church reaches more than 1,300 campuses around the world. Read more at gbhem.org