Students take their faith to higher level at The Gathering


SHARING THEIR EXPERIENCE — During The Gathering this past Sunday, the Rev. Trygve Johnson baptized five Hope College students. This was the first time a baptism has taken place in the Chapel Gathering. (Photos: Kelly Ocock)



(Photo: James Ellis)

Allison Utting (’19)

“I had wanted to be baptized for quite a while, and when Trygve offered the option at The Gathering a couple weeks ago, I decided to take him up on his offer. Since coming to Hope, I have grown immensely in my faith and it was incredible to share this experience with the Hope community as well as my friends and family. I am very grateful to the college, Campus Ministries and everyone involved for making this possible. God is good!”



(Photo: James Ellis)

Hailey Houck (’19)

“Throughout my life I have struggled with imperfection. About four years ago, I had a friend tell me I could not be her friend anymore because I was not a good enough Christian. Since then the devil continued to plant seeds in my heart telling me I was not good enough to receive the love of God. However, God has won the battle and shown me I do not need to be perfect because if I were, then I would not need a perfect God to save me. I pray God continues to help me push away the lies of the devil and keeps me align with His truth. Glory to God, amen.”



(Photo: James Ellis)

Megan Edwards (’17)

“Ephesians 6:11 says: ‘Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes.’ That is how I am choosing to live my life from now on. I know that God’s grace covers me, and with Him I can stand against anything. But more importantly, God’s grace covers each of you, and I hope you know or come to know God’s infinite love for you.”



(Photo: James Ellis)

Murray Sales (’18)

“A huge part of this experience is that I enjoyed getting to spend time in community with the people working on the baptism and my friends in Christ who were also getting baptized. We all took different journeys to get to the point where we wanted to be baptized, but tonight we were all in the same place taking the same step. This sense of community was so powerful and made the experience a little extra life changing than it was going to be already. What pushed me to take this step was really a summer of loss, and God just nudging me a little bit and telling me its time to step into my own faith and really profess it to my friends and the world.”



(Photo: James Ellis)

Emily Sandstedt (’20)

“I chose to be baptized because I wanted to proclaim my identity in Christ. For so long I had been trying to find out who I was apart from God, but after coming to Hope I knew that I needed him in my life. I feel freedom in surrendering myself to Christ and I can’t wait to see what my future will hold.”

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