By The Editorial Board
Even amid the hundreds of students in Waco dedicating their lives to Christ each year, there are still people questioning if faith is really their thing. Instead of asking those questions out in the open and hearing from multiple perspectives, many are afraid of the repercussions that may come from questioning their faith.
There’s a clear stigma that Baylor students are all upstanding Christians and continuously growing in their journeys with the Lord, but how many of us really see ourselves fitting into that mold?
Baylor holds its place in the top ten schools with the most religious students, according to The Princeton Review. However, 2017 studies from Pew Research Center show the relationship between faith and education is complex and in the U.S. college graduates are less likely to say religion is “very important.”
We believe this number is so staggeringly high because students don’t feel as though they can be honest with themselves or others about their mental battles with religion.
Going to college comes with a lot of newfound freedom and privacy with religion. Instead of going to church habitually with family, it’s up to individuals to find a church that suits them and balance attending with piles of work, social responsibilities and rest. Without family or a familiar church community to draw college students to Sunday service like they may have at home, it’s completely up to them.
Instead of ignoring the responsibility to continue learning about religion and finding a niche in that realm, we think students should set new goals when they come into college to grow in their faith, whatever that may be.
No matter what year you are, keep church hopping until you find a place that feels like home. There is no lack of environments to worship in Waco, so do your research and find out what religions pique your interest. Then, narrow it down to what sector of that religion you connect to best and find a place to explore that journey. Give yourself the space to form your own personal relationship with faith in whatever you feel best suits you.
Religion isn’t for everyone, and it can be a big to explore faith if it’s not something you’re comfortable with. Set your own boundaries with religion and questioning faith, and know there is no “right” way to worship or grow in your personal journey.
When you feel lost or at odds, reach out to the many religion professors, chaplains and experts at Baylor who you trust will guide you in an unbiased and non judgemental way. Your freshman roommate, though hopefully trustworthy, may not be the one to turn to with the big religion questions.
Life only gets busier and more stressful from here, so take the time now to strengthen your faith by asking the burning questions you have. College is a time to set the foundation for the rest of your life; make sure it’s a sturdy one.