By Savannah Cooper | Staff Writer
Since 1854, Baylor University has set out to be a world renowned research-based institution that’s proudly firm in its Baptist beliefs. This year Baptist Student Ministries, BSM, is returning to campus for the first time since the late 1990’s to further connect the faith based ministries.
BSM director Dr. Charles Ramsey said he is looking forward to their resurgence on campus, connecting with students and unifying various ministry opportunities.
“There’s a need to connect students with all the different ministries opportunities on campus,” Ramsey said. “We want to see discipleship opportunities happen across the campus and we want to be a multiplier.”
Campus consultant for BSM, Dr. Mark Jones, works with Baylor as a Texas Baptist representative and wants the ministry to connect with students from different backgrounds.
“My philosophy for campus ministry is that you walk with people and you honor the process of walking with people from different backgrounds,” Jones said. “In your mind you might want to get them from here to there, but you got to know where the here is; you got to be a good listener, good person to ask questions understanding people’s background and understanding where they’re coming from before you lump and dump everything on them. You want to have a community that invites whoever to come in but you also want to be very connected.”
Ramsey said that he has been searching for the pulse of campus’ spiritual life by reaching out to on campus ministers from all types looking for pockets of convergence.
“We want to look around for areas of convergence, we want to see if there’s ways partnerships can be formed so we can go after the university mission,” Ramsey said. “I would like for BSM to be known as the great host at Baylor, a place known for its hospitality.”
For college students, it’s easy to be a “spiritual gypsy” as Jones described it.
“College students need to see faith through the eyes of an eight year old and a eighty year old,” Jones said. “You miss out on not only being a blessing, but receiving a blessing by being a part of a church community.”
For those that are hesitant about serving Ramsey knows that every step counts and that when someone is following Christ they’ll always be in the right direction.
“Every step counts, take a step in the right direction and if we really focus our eyes on Christ and his example for us and his calling and his purposes for our life then every step we take is going to be in the right direction,” Ramsey said.
While at Baylor, Ramsey studied abroad in China and since then he’s been to several countries serving others and said that he has realized that to serve properly you have to be comfortable being uncomfortable.
“The comfort in dealing with people who are different than I am and being in that servant role, looking at somebody and saying I’m not sure what I can do for you, but I’m willing and love to see what we can do together, to me, that’s the heart of missions,” Ramsey said.