A block off campus, we have a ministry, Campus Renewal Ministries, that in addition to serving as a ministry coordinator for many campus ministries of both parachurch and church groups among other activities, runs the Campus House of Prayer (CHOP). CHOP has an upper room that serves as a 24/7 prayer chapel where students come to pray for the campus. (CRM has a blog, which has a link on the right side of this page.)
Earlier today, someone from CRM sent out an email to the campus ministers asking groups to sign up to each take a Friday night to have folks come to CHOP and pray overnight. The message said,
“I wanted to inform you that we will be resuming Night Watches this semester. There will be one every Friday night from 10pm-6am, and if we run out of Fridays, we will have some on Thursdays as well. The idea of a Night Watch is to guard and cover the campus in prayer in the darkest hours of the night, just as a policeman would do on his night watch. We want to keep the campus safe and invite God into our night hours because we love the people on this campus.
I urge you to discuss whether or not your ministry should have a night watch with your leadership team. I have found that a lot of growth comes for students when they pray late at night, because they have to fight the drive for sleep that seems to be so strong. Praying late at night with others for long periods of time really grows a student in his/her ability to engage in prayer because it is something that they don't regularly do.”
Another ministry on our campus is to grad students, who monthly have speakers come, usually faculty, to discuss integrating their faith and work.
The point? As faculty, we have the privilege to interact with, support, and encourage our students who are actively working to reach campus. I have asked our faculty to consider signing up for one of the Friday Night Watches, and am constantly connecting the grad students with faculty to arrange speaking to their group. I have spoken to several campus groups and am actively involved in a couple others because it is hard to minister from the class room, and often in the research setting, but the students value knowing we are out there and working alongside them. It reminds them that they are not doing this alone, nor that their walk/ministry ends when they walk the stage at graduation.
It is a lifestyle, and we are called, as members of the Body of Christ, to work together for the same ends.