Project Description: The United Campus Ministry at Montana State University- Billings is excited to launch a new initiative on our 50th Anniversary that we are calling Nexus- Empowering students to be the nexus of campus, community and church.
This new initiative of United Campus Ministry at MSU Billings begins by affirming God’s call in students’ lives to be in ministry with the world. It then empowers and equips them to live out this call within preexisting communities that may not already be in meaningful connection. This first year of Nexus will include a cohort of students who will meet weekly for supervision with the campus minister and with each other as a peer team. They will work collaboratively with the MSUB campus, a community and the 20+ local churches that UCM represents.
Generational Collaborations- We currently have a student exploring geriatrics chaplaincy as a United Methodist Deacon. His focus will be on bringing students, faculty or staff from MSUB to local retirement apartments, transitional facilities and nursing homes. Activities may include mutual sharing and documenting of life stories, educational and social programs. We will also be in conversation with local churches to send congregants and share constituents who may be in the retirement center.
Dialogues Across Difference- We partnered with two local congregations this spring to host a trial campus dialogue on “Gun Usage” to help people understand and dialogue with persons holding divergent views on divisive issues. There has been a lot of interest in making this into a reoccurring program that addresses several divisive topics each semester. The intent is not to create a debate but instead to teach skills and techniques for listening and speaking across differences.
Justice on the Margins- We will provide a combination of field trips and educational opportunities designed to teach both historical regional injustices and contemporary parallels. We are currently exploring a trip to Heart Mountain Internment camp paired with a local MSUB professor and Little Bighorn/Crow Agency trip paired with education from our MSUB Office of American Indian