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Seniors Show Appreciation for Christian Union at Dinner

by tom campisi, managing editor

In April, students with Christian Union at Columbia hosted a senior dinner at the organization’s new ministry center. It was a sweet time of reflection, prayer, and even a few tears, as seniors looked back with gratitude on four years of spiritual growth and Christian community.

“Student after student commented on how the ministry has made a difference in their lives and how they have made lifelong friends,” said Yolanda Solomon, a Christian Union ministry fellow at Columbia. “They talked about connecting and staying in touch and how they will miss Christian Union.”


The senior dinners never get old for Solomon and Christian Union faculty.


During their senior dinner, students expressed gratitude for spiritual growth, shared memories, and lifelong friends made during their time with Christian Union at Columbia.

“It’s a beautiful part of ministry and this job—to see the students come here at 17 and 18 years old and to see them grow,” she said. “They minister to one another and pray for each other.”

Senior Gabrielle Lewis, who served as co-president of Christian Union at Columbia this past academic year, said the dinner was filled with “joyful reminiscing.”

“We laughed about many memories that had been [shared] over the years. From remembering watching the stars on the pier as a freshman class at our first fall retreat, to hosting a senior movie and dumplings night this year; we could not help but smile at the time we have had together and be hopeful for what the future holds,” she said. “We were all thankful for the home that Christian Union has been throughout our four years. We were thankful for the memories shared, lessons learned, and times to come.”

Lewis gave thanks for ministry fellows and peers who helped guide her through “this labyrinth of life.”

“They challenged me to press further into the Word of God and grow into the woman that God has called me to be,” she said. “Christian Union has made my time at Columbia something that I will cherish forever.” 

The future certainly looks bright for Lewis, a native of New Orleans. The political science and business management major will work as a sales and trading analyst at Morgan Stanley.

Senior Yujin Kim served with Lewis as a co-president. The math major from Oakland, California, said a common theme of the dinner was gratitude for the ministry fellows and the support the students received, through good times and bad times.

“Christian Union has been a place where I could develop my faith and be challenged in ways I never imagined,” he said.

Future plans for Kim include the pursuit of a PhD at New York University’s Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences. He was one of only 98 students nationwide to win a National Science Foundation scholarship in mathematics.

“Yujin is an incredibly talented young man,” said Lane Young, Christian Union’s ministry director at Columbia. “He really poured into the ministry and loved this ministry. God has used his gifts.”

Kim was appreciative of the influence of Christian Union, especially “learning how to incorporate God in every area of my life.”

Lewis is looking to carry out Christian Union’s vision, which is “to seek a spiritually vibrant nation marked by Christian values permeating every corner of society.”

“I have learned that no matter the role or industry, we can use our God-given gifts to serve Him through our work,” she said. “There is room to be a beacon of light and make an impact in any industry.” 

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