Posted by: topher274 | September 17, 2008

The ol’ Alma Mater


Alma Mater. Latin for ‘nourishing milk.’ Though certainly a strange term to describe where one went to college, truly my college experience was an overwhelmingly rich one. I am here now, at Houghton College in rural western New York state. Houghton is a Christian liberal arts college where I studied, among other things, Intercultural studies and linguistics. There are many things I could say about this school, but I will focus on just one. Y’know – for focus. <<insert crook-eye here>>

On Sunday nights here at Houghton, there is a wonderful ministry called Koinonia. All this ministry does (for the most part) is lead worship services on the chapel stage. Nothing compulsory, no pressure – just a come if you want sort of a thing. We have a small college, only about 1200-1400 students, but more than a third of them come out to worship on Sundays.

Now we do have compulsory chapel services – It’s a Monday/Wednesday/Friday thing and you have to go to 2/3 of them. But Koinonia draws these huge numbers of people just to worship.

I suppose I grew up believing that worship was just one component of a Church service. I guessed that worship was just to ‘butter you up’ for the preaching. I had never imagined that worship in song was of intrinsic value in and of itself. Growing up, worship had always been like a means to an end, but Koinonia was one of my first introductions to participating in a faith community where I did authentically Christian things besides “going to church.” Gathering just to worship the Lord with no ulterior motives (like boring sermons, for instance) opened up a whole new world of spirituality for me. Ah the old days.

I reckon this is all I have to say for now.



  1. Time for the daily check-in…I realize today is Sunday but it’s probably almost Monday in Korea. Any word?

    Hope you’re great, wherever you are.

  2. join the facebook group: 10 million people that think sermons are boring

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