H2O is a college ministry. That means come summer everyone goes home and we cease to exist for three and a half months until school starts back up again in August, right? Nope! Despite being a college ministry, there are still a lot of people around campus in the summer either taking summer classes, co-oping with a local company, or simply living down there with a part-time job on the side. Because of this, our ministry looks slightly different than it does during the fall and spring semesters, but it doesn't stop. So, what exactly does H2O do in the summer?
Yep! We still have our weekly Sunday Service in the summer just like in the fall--with a few structural changes. For instance, instead of meeting on campus in a room that seats over 300, we meet right off campus in the Stratford Pavilion that seats roughly 100. With a lot of the students gone for the summer, we typically average between 50 and 60 on a Sunday instead of our usual 180. In addition, our summer services are a little more informal in that our head pastors rarely speak. Instead, most sermons are done by senior leaders looking for speaking experience or by one of our deacons. To listen to one of the sermons from this summer (or from any Sunday service we've ever recorded) go here.
Just like during the regular school year, H2O Cincy still has lifegroups during the summer (or more so lifegroup). Due to the number of students on campus in the summer, there is only one campus lifegroup held each week. These lifegroups are run by our five interns for the summer. Here is what one of the interns, Ashley Sayre, a third-year student leader, said about how God has worked through her willingness to intern,
"Interning with H2O Church Cincinnati has been such a joy so far this summer! I have enjoyed joining the staff team and getting experience to practice what God has placed in my heart to do the rest of my life, being a vocational missionary. Accepting His invitation to join His will for the University of Cincinnati and H2O Cincy has caused my cup to overflow even more. This summer God is preparing His bride and affirming her (us) in who He says she is. Building up Christ's body has been an incredible joy. The church has started to walk together as confident sons and daughters of God and this overflowing of being "the beloved" is causing the church to burn with zeal to love the lost on our campus. We are overflowing with the love of Christ! How much more will this ignite revival on our campus?! The Spirit of God is leading us into all truth, causing the word of God to become flesh through our lives. What our campus needs, is children of God overflowing with love and intimacy with Him, truly tasting and seeing the goodness of God. This is what God is doing! He is equipping the saints for the work of ministry with His Spirit through taking us into the height, width, and depth of the love of Christ on our behalf!"
Trying new things is good, hence the reason our interns had the brilliant idea to start something dubbed "The Tent" this summer. If you've ever heard of David's Tent in Washington, DC then you'll get the gist of what The Tent's purpose is. If not, then David's Tent is a 24/7 worship tent set up on the national mall in Washington, DC. That's right, 24/7 worship in our nation's capital. So, to mimic this on smaller scale, H2O is setting up a tent on campus 2-3 days a week and having worship during the day. From what I've heard it's been an awesome experience, although I personally haven’t been able to attend.
Update on Me
While my friends have been hard at work in Cincinnati to keep H2O running smoothly, my summer so far has been a mixture of support raising, writing, reading, coaching, and some more writing. The support raising process is daunting, more daunting than I expected it to be entering this summer. Thankfully, I've been able to spend some of my free time volunteering to coach the high school and YMCA swim teams. Not only does this get me out of the house but it's also a great way to pour into the community one last time before I move down to Cincinnati. As far as writing, without 30+ of schoolwork a week or being told what to write, I've enjoyed the freedom of getting to write what I want for the first time in over a year. In addition, I've been able to get back into reading and for the past two weeks have been reading through CS Lewis' Space Trilogy (which, if you haven't read, I highly suggest).
As always, I want to thank those of you who are already on my team. It is because of your generous donations that I'll be able to get back to campus and reach the mission field God has placed in front of me. Feel free to contact me at anytime. Until then, God Bless.