At Austin College, we believe our historic and ongoing relationship to the Presbyterian Church may be most fully seen through discussion of what that relationship enables us to offer—to all our students, to the church, and to the world.
- Read the Presbyterian Covenant
In the 2017-2018 academic year, our church-relatedness has enabled Austin College to offer our students:
- Weekly Sunday evening communion services that are planned and led by students from a variety of Christian traditions;
- Weekly Lectio Divina Bible studies based on the common lectionary and tied to the following Sunday’s worship service;
- Christian and non-Christian student religious groups including:
- Catholic Students Association
- Hindu Students Association
- Intervarsity Christian Fellowship
- Jewish Students Association
- Muslim Students Association
- The Service Station program through which over 400 Austin College students were involved in some form of community service;
- Interfaith activities including:
- Eid Festival, sponsored by the Muslim Students Association in the fall
- The annual Service of Lessons and Carols in which over 200 students, faculty, and staff participated in the College’s official Christmas celebration
- Seder Dinner sponsored by the Chapel and the Jewish Students Association
- Campus-wide dinners sponsored by the Indian Cultural Association celebrating the Hindu festivals of “Diwali” and “Masala”
- The ACtivators program through which 35 Austin College students traveled over 4100 miles to lead 19 different ministry events involving over 1300 children, youth, adults, and senior citizens.
- Since its founding in 1995, the ACtivators program has involved 574 Austin College students who have traveled over 173,000 miles to lead 682 ministry events involving over 52,000 children, youth, adults, and senior citizens from 21 presbyteries in 13 states.
To the church, we offered:
- 51 former ACtivators who currently serve as full-time clergy or educators in Presbyterian Church (USA) congregations in 12 different states;
- 25 former ACtivators who have served as Presbyterian Church (USA) Young Adult Volunteers;
- 7 Austin College graduates beginning or continuing study in Presbyterian seminaries;
- 1 Austin College graduate who is currently studying at Vanderbilt Divinity School;
- 4 ACtivators who served as youth directors in local congregations in 2017-18.
To the world, we offered:
- 60% of 2018 graduates who studied abroad for at least one month during their time at Austin College;
- The “First We Serve” activity in which—before they even went to their first class—Austin College freshmen prepared 31,996 nutritious meals for families in need on the Moskito Coast in Honduras;
- “Helping Harvey’s Heroes” Week in which the Austin College Service Station coordinated a week’s worth of fundraising and educational activities through which students raised over $6000 for Hurricane Relief;
- An Alternative Spring Break trip in March 2018 involving 34 students and faculty/staff sponsors who traveled to Lafayette, Louisiana, to participate in flood relief activities;
- Ongoing partnership with the Simbaredenga Newstart Children’s Home, an AIDS orphanage in Zimbabwe; and
- The continuation of our Global Outreach program through which students have raised over $16,000 in the last four years for microloans in Senegal through the Tostan program.
For more information, contact Chaplain John Williams at 903.813.2220.