The WSC family believes that community and fellowship is an integral and necessary part of seminary. This community brings to heart what is being studied in the classrooms as our students, spouses, families, faculty and staff care, grow, and pray with and for one another as we live Life Together.
by Christen Colquitt
Community can be an elusive thing. It is something that we all long for; something that nourishes us in deep places; yet not something that is guaranteed. Graduate school can be especially challenging for forming community. Neighbors and fellow church members can be hesitant to invest in friendship knowing that you will be leaving in a few years. As the wife of a graduate student, I’ve found the challenge even more acute. I am not on campus everyday interacting with fellow students; in fact, my community mostly involves isolated time with a precocious two year old by my side.
What a gift it has been, then, that WSC values the need for community and works diligently to foster it through efforts like the Westminster Women’s Fellowship (WWF) events. Don’t get me wrong; I am just as apprehensive as the next person when walking into a sea of new faces, with white nametags as my only guide. But whether it’s been a night of rolling dice at Bunco, getting out of a meal-planning rut with the Recipe Swap, or soaking up the wisdom of a professor as he presents his latest book material, the monthly fellowship events have laid the needed groundwork for developing friendships.
Now there are impromptu Sunday afternoon barbecues after church. There are girls night outs while our husbands are holed up studying for final exams. There are Chick-fil-A breakfasts at the park and time to hear life stories from these fellow women that hail from all parts of the world (Japan, Malawi and Canada to name a few). The initial, surface conversations of “where are you from?” and “what year is your husband?” have matured into discussions of our hopes, fears and prayers for the ministry demands that await us post-graduation. The camaraderie amongst the fellow wives has been a source of tremendous comfort.
"I would think it a wearisome thing to befriend a new batch of women each year only to bid them goodbye a few years later, but the faculty wives do it so graciously and joyfully. Hospitality is a way of life here."
That said it is the opportunity to interact with the faculty wives that has been the most surprising and cherished aspect of WWF for me. These men married well! I would think it a wearisome thing to befriend a new batch of women each year only to bid them goodbye a few years later, but the faculty wives do it so graciously and joyfully. Hospitality is a way of life here. They’ve invited our family into their homes for dinner, welcomed me into their gardens for planting advice, shared tips from their own days as the wife of a seminary student (such as audit a class so you have an idea of what your husband is learning), and faithfully prayed for us. They have offered not only wisdom, but also friendship.
We are halfway through our time here at seminary and I am already saddened at the thought of leaving this community. Paul writes in Ephesians 4, “we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ, from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love." The community here at WSC has been a beautiful and vivid picture of that – thanks in large part to the space that the women’s fellowship creates for connection and friendship.
Life Together Blog Posts
- A Professor’s Perspective Part I
- A Professor’s Perspective Part II
- A Spiritually Enriching Education
- Fostering Personal Student-Faculty Relationships
- Creating Lasting Bonds
- Built Up in Love