CAMPUS: Students talk about the Bible and their religion across Orange County college campuses.
Christian college students in Santa Ana are spreading their faith across local campuses the old fashioned way — evangelism.
Though campuses are a likely place to reach a diverse set of youths, a 2011 poll shows that the more education a person gains, the less likely they are to believe in the Bible. With these statistics working against them, Christian students began weekly Bible Talk meetings in the Quad at Santa Ana College to share their faith with their peers in a prayer group known as Alpha Omega.
Alpha Omega, a non-denominational Christian group of the Orange County Church of Christ, has already planted roots in at least four other colleges including Cal State Fullerton, UC Irvine and Chapman University, with plans to continue spreading its message across Orange County campuses.
“Members of Alpha Omega from different campuses gather at CSUF and participate in Bible lectures,” said SAC student and Alpha Omega member Daniel Sandoval.
Bible Talk meetings at SAC began last semester as a test. Now, about a dozen students gather every Wednesday at 12:30 p.m. by the amphitheater.
“Alpha Omega is designed for college students who are struggling with their faith as they enter such a vulnerable environment,” says Rudy Gonzalez, a member of the Christian youth group and student at SAC.
“With so many distractions, Bible Talks provide that positive reinforcement.”
Along with the many diversions in the world that the group believes lead people away from their faith, education may play an even bigger role.
A May 2011 Gallup Poll showed that literal belief in the Bible declines as education increases. Twenty-two percent of Americans with at least some college education believe the Bible is the actual word of God versus 56 percent who believe the Bible is an inspired word of God; 19 percent believe it is a book of fables and legends.
“It’s not surprising that in today’s society, people rely less on the Bible to show how nature is a direct result of God when modern science has been answering questions about who we are for thousands of years,” member Adrianna Castro said.
“As long as they are not pressuring students to join, I do not have an issue with their plan to reach out to other schools,” says Elizabeth Calderon. “I could understand why some students need it.”