College and Community Provide Religious Service for Students

Lindsey Temaat, Managing Editor

This year, because of student interest and initiative, there is a Bible study at Allen Community College’s Iola campus every Tuesday night at 8 p.m. in the Fish Pond.

Austin Hendrix, a student ambassador, tutor, male freshman class representative, and Phi Theta Kappa officer, played a pivotal role in establishing the organization.

I think we have a lot of fun… We are getting closer to one another and to God.

— Austin Hendrix

“I felt called to start a Bible study at the school,” said Hendrix, who was raised in a Christian household in Colony, Kan., just a few miles from Allen’s Iola campus. Hendrix led his local chapter of Fellowship of Christian Athletes for two years in high school and is glad he can continue that same spiritual leadership in college.

“I want to figure out how to make it so it keeps going even after I leave the college,” said Hendrix.

On average, about 14 students attend each week, and with recent interest from youth leaders in the community, Iola residents have gotten involved as well.

Lindsey Temaat
Freshmen Taylor Beaudry and Lauren Suter attend the Bible Study at Harvest Baptist Church every Wednesday at noon.

Although the group is not recognized as an official club and does not have an adviser at the college, the student led organization has ambitions of making a lasting impact on the college culture and surrounding communities.

“I was thinking we could go on a mission trip out of our own pocket, or go someplace and do something really cool,” said Hendrix, noting that the group attended a concert together in January.

IN ADDITION TO the Tuesday night gatherings in the Fish Pond, Harvest Baptist Church hosts lunch for college students every Wednesday at noon and provides a safe space for religious discussion. This tradition has continued for several years and is led by Tony Godfrey, lead pastor at the church.

Lauren Suter, a freshman from Burlington, attends both the Bible study at the college and luncheon discussion at Harvest Baptist on Wednesday afternoons.

“I think it’s really nice because it’s a group that can hold you accountable,” said Suter. “It helps to know that there are other Christians at the college that are going through the same thing you are, and you can lean on each other.”

The Methodist churches in Iola join forces on Sunday nights to provide college students with a free dinner at the Foundry (located at 228 S Kentucky St.) followed by live music, prayer and worship.  

“I think we have a lot of fun, the people who are involved,” Hendrix said about the Christian community at Allen. “We are getting closer to one another and to God.”