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Christian Union: The Magazine
July 2, 2021

CU Libertas Celebrates Seniors

By Anne Kerhoulas, Staff Writer

In an exciting and encouraging end to their time in college, seniors of CU Libertas gathered in person to be celebrated and recognized by underclassmen and to get off campus for a seniors-only day retreat. Though these kinds of events are typical for the graduation season, Ministry Fellow Laurel Copp says that these were the only two in-person events the ministry formally hosted all year due to COVID-19 restrictions.

CU Libertas Seniors

“After such a hard year, it was so important to be together in person to celebrate what God has done in each of their lives, in their time at Brown, and through Christian Union,” says Copp. “It was the first time that some of our students had seen each other in person in over a year, which made it feel so celebratory! There was also a real sense of how God was present with them through the difficult times of undergrad, but also in the Covid-19 season. To be able to share that with each other before graduating and in person was a sweet blessing and another beautiful way in which God was present with these young women.”

The senior send-off gathered students across grades together to honor and reflect upon the impact of the graduating class. Each senior was assigned a poster board to which students wrote encouragements, memories, or ways that each senior had helped them mature in their faith during their time in CU Libertas. These affirmation boards were a blessing to the seniors, who endured through most of their junior and senior years in the pandemic. 

Copp gave a short exhortation to the group as they considered all that was ahead of them and remembered how the Lord had been faithful throughout the past four years. Students spent time in prayer together, praising God for the community, and praying for seniors individually. 

“Because I have been involved with CU since my first year, the senior retreat and send-off were wonderful ‘full circle’ celebratory times. My favorite moment was when we took turns writing compliments for each senior,” says Allana Brown ’21. “It was meaningful to connect with the CU community, share laughs, and reflect on my time at Brown.”

The senior retreat took seven students to the beach in Rhode Island for a day trip that included lunch out, time at the beach, and time to reflect and share together. Copp asked that students consider when they encountered a low point in their spiritual life at Brown and how the Lord met them in it, as well as a time of spiritual growth or moment each student could see God at work in their life. 

“It was really interesting in our reflection time how many of them talked about the impact of COVID-19 on their spiritual growth, and how God used a hard situation to bring about good in their lives,” notes Copp.

These questions provided the groundwork for a profound time of reflection and encouragement as students remembered the tough times in their college careers and how the Lord had provided for them through the CU Libertas community to sustain them.

“When I entered college, I knew that I believed in Jesus, but it wasn’t until after my time in CU these past four years that I truly feel I have formed a relationship with God,” says Brown. “Participating in (the leadership lecture series) Anchor and Bible courses helped me to deepen my understanding of who God is and made me even more eager to learn more about Him. I also valued our small discussions in discipleship, which helped me apply the Word practically to my life.”

Though their time at Brown is over and ended in ways that no one could ever have fathomed, Copp was encouraged to see the work the Lord has done in these seniors as they move on into the next chapter of their lives. 

“It was a beautiful moment of hope, to remember that God can work through really difficult situations to bring about beautiful things for his people,” she said. “It was also encouraging to see how the students really cared for others even as they also were struggling. It was a beautiful reminder that God uses his people and his church to bless the world. Because of the uniqueness of the short amount of time that we were able to spend together, we dove right into what was really important or close to their heart. Which made it a really sweet time together.”

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