InterVarsity Christian Fellowship is an organization located at Randolph-Macon College and many other schools internationally.
“The roots of the InterVarsity movement are with students at the University of Cambridge, in England in 1877. There, a group of Christian students began to meet together, in spite of the disapproval of some University officials, to pray, to study the Bible and to witness to fellow students. Soon, similar groups sprang up on other campuses. Eventually, they formed the British Inter-Varsity (inter – meaning between, varsity – the British term for college level students),” as stated on the official InterVarsity website. InterVarsity, however, did not come to the United States until November 1941, and has just recently come to Randolph-Macon’s campus.
Over J-term break, while everyone was settling down from their classes, travels abroad, and internships, nineteen members from Randolph-Macon’s chapter of InterVarsity Christian Fellowship attended the Eastern Virginia InterVarsity Christian Fellowship Conference or EVA. The conference lasted three days spanning from February 5-7. The conference was held at the Embassy Suites Hotel and Coliseum in Hampton, Virginia where colleges and universities such as Virginia Commonwealth University, George Mason University, University of Mary Washington, Randolph-Macon College, and many others were represented. The conference consisted of three days of intensive sermons, workshops, and prayers.
The main speaker at the conference was Percy Strickland. Strickland is the founder and CEO of Church Hill After School Tutoring, or CHAT, and was a former InterVarsity staff member at the University of Richmond. Strickland completed his Master of Divinity from Union Theological Seminary in 2006, and also serves as a teacher to elderly men and women at the East End Fellowship, “a multi-ethnic worshipping community in the East End of Richmond.”
The topic of the conference was “Words Bring Life.” This meant that each student who went to the conference learned the art of telling their own personal stories or testimonies. The students learned about networking with other people on their campuses and they learned skills that would help them be bold in their faith.
Senior Lydia Delk said she had a great weekend sharing her story and learning about “THE story.” What Lydia meant by “THE story” is the creation story. Throughout the three day conference, Strickland spoke about the creation story in a new and innovative way. Instead of reading it directly, word-for-word from the Bible, Strickland turned it into a story that was clearly related to both the text and modern times.
One of the main points that many of the students took with them after walking out of the conference was that you do not have to tell your story all at once. Sometimes stories take time to teach us a lesson, and above all, we should tell our stories to teach truth, not give out information.
“This weekend was so amazing! We had a great time getting to know God’s story and each other’s stories better. EVA Con 2016 can definitely be called a success!” junior Laura Haney shared. Unanimously, this was the group’s response to the weekend, and they are all excited for EVA Con in 2017.
-Kayla Koslosky ’18, Junior Features Editor