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Christian Union: The Magazine

Intellectual Engagement

March 3, 2019

A Theology of Making

by makoto fujimura

In my studio, I make art. The term “Theology of Making” (the title of my upcoming book) amplifies how this human act is connected to the divine presence. Simply put, when we make, God “shows up.”  Therefore, before I begin a discourse on what God has done to make even our broken shards of life invaluable essences of the new creation, let me began by describing the creative process that an artist knows well, and how God the artist reveals a vision beyond the “fixing” of our lives, a type of theology.    

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March 1, 2019

The Case for Kindness

Christian Union Caritas Distributes Care Packages

by tom campisi, managing editor

Caritas, Christian Union’s ministry to students at Stanford University, pumped life into “Dead Week” in early December.  


Dead Week is a time of intense studying and reduced social and extracurricular activity preceding final examinations. In an effort to help reduce stress and bless fellow classmates, Christian Union Caritas delivered care packages to the dorm rooms of approximately 150 students. The packages contained candy, hot chocolate, stuffed animals, information about Christian Union, and a copy of Lee Strobel’s short book, The Case for Christmas

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February 28, 2019

All Things New

by cheryl ennis self

Grace and peace to you, from God the Father and from our Lord Jesus Christ. 

MagCherylIt is truly an honor to introduce myself as one whom God has recently called to serve at Christian Union in the role of Vice President of Development. My name is Cheryl Ennis Self, and for the past 26 years, I have had the privilege of working for three Christian organizations. Most recently, I served for 16 years at World Vision, a global Christian organization that ministers to the poorest of the poor in nearly 100 countries.

In that capacity, I visited and worked in 36 countries, mostly in remote parts of developing nations. While the living conditions were dire, I did meet believers in all parts of Africa, Asia, and the Americas who learned to place their trust and hope in Jesus Christ. Those villagers were supported by local churches and by their long-term relationships with World Vision’s Christian staff who lived in their communities. Indeed, the joy of the Lord was evident in some of the most dismal circumstances because God is able, His Spirit is all powerful, and His sons and daughters are faithful to serve others with the spiritual and professional gifts He has given them, for His purposes. In Christ, we are all made new.

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November 30, 2018

A Celebrated Space

Christian Union Dedicates Ministry Center at Columbia  

by catherine elvy, staff writer

Profound awe and gratitude permeated the highly anticipated opening of Christian Union’s ministry center adjacent to Columbia University.

On October 13, staff, ministry faculty, and financial partners of the leadership development organization celebrated the debut of the center on West 113th Street with a dedication and ribbon-cutting ceremony. 

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November 25, 2018

Olympic Dreams

Collins ’19 Is a Leader on Women’s Crew Team

by catherine elvy, staff writer 

For one Princeton University senior, grueling routines are just part of pursuing her Olympic dreams.

“I’m an Olympic hopeful. There’s lots of training and hard times ahead,” said Claire Collins ’19, an accomplished rower.

In July, Collins ’19 helped the United States capture the 2018 World Rowing Under 23 Championship in Poland. Overall, the United States team took home eight medals. Collins helped the United States to clock a 6:08.04 in the women’s eight, 0.19 seconds ahead of the United Kingdom for the bronze medal.

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November 22, 2018

Engaging through Volunteering

Christian Union Panel Discussion Focuses on Reconciliation

by catherine elvy, staff writer

Drew Griffin, the managing editor of Providence: A Journal of Christianity & American Foreign Policy,highlighted the critical role believers play in fostering redemption, reconciliation, and transformation within their spheres of influence when he appeared at a Christian Union New York forum this summer.

Griffin moderated a panel of non-profit leaders who took part in an event entitled Mission to the City: Engaging through Volunteering. About 55 people attended the forum, held at the Scandinavia House on Park Avenue in Manhattan.

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November 18, 2018

Christian Union Caritas

Ministry Begins Third Year in Silicon Valley

by tom campisi, managing editor

Two years ago, Christian Union expanded west by launching Caritas, a ministry to students at Stanford University.

Since 2002, Christian Union has focused on influential colleges in the Northeast, with a presence at Brown, Columbia, Cornell, Dartmouth, Harvard, Penn, Princeton, and Yale.

Impacting students in California’s Silicon Valley fits in well with the mission of developing Christian leaders to transform culture, according to Garrett Brown, Christian Union’s Director of Undergraduate Ministry at Stanford.

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November 15, 2018

Friday Night Lights

Freshman Welcoming Campaign Attracts a Crowd  

by tom campisi, managing editor

At the start of the fall semester, Christian Union at Brown’s faculty wanted to extend its Freshman Welcoming Campaign beyond students who would typically attend a Bible course or leadership lecture series.

To reach a “festive” demographic late on a Friday night, Ministry Fellows Justin Doyle and Laurel Copp, Intern Gianna Uson, and student leaders brought grills and burgers to Wayland Arch, which is located between Frat Row and a freshman dorm quad. Christian Union at Brown set up camp in the midst of partying students, handing out about 150 sliders and bottles of water.

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November 13, 2018

Summer Book Study

Students Encounter The Prodigal God

by catherine elvy, staff writer

The parable of the Prodigal Son points to distinct forms of spiritual lostness, one marked by wanton sinfulness and another by self-righteousness, and reveals the lavish grace of God in redeeming them both.

These insights emerged when students involved with Christian Union’s ministry at the University of Pennsylvania spent a portion of their summer probing The Prodigal God: Recovering the Heart of the Christian Faith,by Tim Keller. In the 2008 book, Keller highlights how Christ provides the answer to lifestyles ensnared by immorality, as well as the hidden traps of hypocritical religiosity.

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November 11, 2016

Christianity in Economics

CU-Christian-Economics-TodaySadly, many Christians have a stunted understanding of economics, with some even insisting that the Bible doesn’t really concern itself with such topics. In reality however, the Bible bestows upon us a wholesome worldview to which we can apply and shape our different spheres of life, whether they be economics, politics, or culture.

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November 8, 2016

Changing Cultural Norms Are Eroding Religious Freedom

CU-Cultural-Erosion-TodayThe First Amendment is receiving a massive amount of pushback, not just from a specific group, but by the culture as a whole. Trevin Wax, in his article ‘4 Cultural Trends Leading to the Decline of Religious Liberty’, states:

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October 20, 2016

The Christian Address to Relativism

CU-Christian-response-relativism-TodayThe idea of the university has long been that of a community dedicated to discovering truth and its application to life. Guided by this mission, students and teachers were enabled to find the noble and beautiful things in the world, discover their relationship to one another, as well as establish a concrete structure from which all thoughts, words and actions flowed in their proper order.

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October 18, 2016

Man does not live on sex alone: Tolkien’s Words of Wisdom

CU-words-wisdom-tolkien-TodayTolkien dearly loved his children, and he left a literary legacy in the form of letters. Many of these letters were written to his sons, and these letters represent, not only a hallmark of literary quality, but a treasure of Christian teaching on matters of manhood, marriage, and sex. Taken together, these letters constitute a priceless legacy, not only to the Tolkien boys, but to all those with whom the letters have been shared.

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October 6, 2016

Lawyers Forbidden to Practice Religion

CU-Lawayers-Forbidden-Paractice-Religion-TodayIn an era that celebrates certain forms of diversity under the banner of acceptance, it is ironic that large swathes of American society—those who affirm traditional sexual ethics—are increasingly unwelcome. Now, there is a movement to exclude those holding such beliefs from the legal profession, or force them into conformity to secular sexual ethics. Recently, the American Bar Association initiated a horrifying change to their ethics rules. Under the new rules, any speech or activity that could be traced to organizations that endorse traditional sexual ethics, is punishable.

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October 5, 2016

Generation Snowflake: How We Got to This Point

CU-Undertanding-Generation-Snowflake-TodayIn a thoughtful article entitled ‘Understanding Generation Snowflake’, writer Carl Trueman reviews and dissects a book entitled I Find That Offensive. In the book, Claire Fox covers in-depth the present plight of many Western universities. She points out the weakness of modern day students and their need for “safe spaces,” while also identifying the significant changes in Western culture itself in the last few decades that have produced such a sensitive generation:

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September 22, 2016

The Role of Christians in Economic Freedom

CU-Christians-Economic-Freedom-TodayAccording to one major index of economic freedom, by country, the US has been in steady decline since the early 2000s. In the Economic Freedom of the World 2016 Annual Report, the US has dropped from second best in the world to sixteenth or eighteenth. How does this happen? Anne Bradley, a Christian economist, offered her insights into this phenomenon during an interview with Joe Connors:

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September 20, 2016

Autonomy Is Not the Freedom We Need

CU-Autonomy-Not-Freedom-TodayIn recent decades, American culture has so fetishized autonomy as a moral good that the once-beneficial idea, taken to excess, is now harming individuals and threatens to tear apart the fabric of society itself. Devotees of radical autonomy assert that individuals can define the relationships they have with others on their own terms, and cast aside traditional definitions of friendship, marriage, or parenthood. 

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September 14, 2016

Help Wanted: Christian Intellectuals Needed

In today’s world, we need unabashed Christian leaders in the realms of intellectual pursuits. However, this is difficult because of the particular antagonism Christianity generates in secular academia.

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September 12, 2016

‘Born That Way’ and Other Myths Disproved

CU-today-Myths_disprovedA new, eye-opening report has surfaced on the sexuality and “gender” front. The report’s authors are Lawrence S. Mayer, MB, MS, PhD, a scholar in residence in the Department of Psychiatry at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and a professor of statistics and biostatistics at Arizona State University, and Paul R. McHugh, former psychiatrist in chief at Johns Hopkins Hospital, University Distinguished Professor of Psychiatry at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. 

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August 31, 2016

C.S. Lewis on Prayer

CS-Lewis-Prayer-CU-TodayWhy do we pray?

Even those of us who pray regularly have sometimes wondered if we should not ask God for things in prayer because, since He is all-wise, doesn’t He know already what is best? And if He is all-good, won’t He do it whether we pray or not?

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