Unique and unifying: BCM

Unique and unifying: BCM

Graham Ford, Contributing Writer

Even with its unique style fit to its campus, North Greenville University strives to maintain the mission of the widely known college ministry that is BCM.

Baptist Collegiate Ministry, or BCM for short, is a college ministry that is ran across several campuses in different states. South Carolina has 30 colleges alone in which BCM takes place. BCM exist to allow college campuses experience the gospel, to make disciples, to mobilize students to share the gospel with peers and to send students out on mission.

North Greenville’s campus has its own BCM that is unique to the students of the university while still being true to what the organization believes to be important.

Through opportunities for students to listen, build community and serve, NGU’s BCM does what it can to carry out the purpose of BCM as a whole. As they stand for the same mission, there are diverse ways the mission is carried out across different universities such as NGU.

Connor Graves, the BCM director for North Greenville University, is passionate about making sure that the BCM on campus sticks to the core values of the ministry while also shaping to better fit and serve NGU.

Graves knows that every campus is different in the ways they program their BCM gatherings, and he wants to make sure that he is able to give most students everything they need to hear, learn, retain and share the gospel.

Some schools meet on different nights, different times and different methods of presenting a message. Graves considers one large group of students meeting together on Thursdays has been a good fit for the students of NGU.

Graves said, “I am not sure what all other schools are doing with their BCM gatherings, but I try to form ours to what our students need.”

Graves tries to walk through studies that are helpful and applicable to college students. He is currently going through a series dedicated to the things that might be difficult for people to talk about, and he shows them the benefits of discussing them.

He sometimes uses a discussion panel so that students who are attending Thursday night gathering can hear from other knowledgeable speakers.

To ensure students are getting the most out of each gathering, Graves set up a special time at the end of each session to allow students to get in groups of three to five and discuss the reflection questions they are given at the end of each message.

Students then spend some time in personal prayer with one another. Graves said, “This helps process and go deeper in community and accountability with people.”

Because BCM is much broader than a weekly gathering, Graves made the decision to give the Thursday night BCM gathering a new name. after a few drafts of different names, this summer, Graves decided to run with the name “Fount”. This is a reference to a phrase in scripture where it refers to the Lord as a Fountain of Living Water.

The new name “Fount” was set for a few different reasons. The first was because Graves felt there was conflation between BCM as a weekly gathering and BCM as an organization.

Another reason for the new name was to make students who didn’t have a Baptist background more comfortable in being a part of the gatherings and ministry opportunities. Graves also did not want to make students who felt they didn’t fit in with the organization of BCM feel like they couldn’t be accepted at the Thursday night gathering.

“Because BCM is an organization, sometimes I felt like maybe it created the perception that unless you are a part of this club or this group that Thursday night gatherings weren’t a space for them,” said Graves. 

Keddy Mendoza, junior, is heavily involved with BCM and is an advocate for everyone to get involved as well. “There are many students that are simply waiting for a personal invitation,” said Mendoza.

She understands that not everyone on NGU’s campus is a Christian. She even said, “It would be so wrong to assume that student on this campus is a follower of Christ just because we go to a Christian university.”

Mendoza was grateful for the ways that NGU’s BCM gave her the opportunity to learn from the ministry and eventually serve in the ministry. She was got connected with the BCM by attending which led her to start leading worship for the Thursday night gatherings.

NGU’s BCM gives students different ways to be plugged in and chances to serve. A big serving area is through impact teams. Impact teams are sent out to different churches who need assistance in running Disciple Now retreats.

Students get the opportunity to lead small groups, lead worship and even preach on Disciple Now trips. Other ways to serve with BCM at NGU is by being a greeter for Thursday gathering or helping out with commuter lunch on Thursdays.

Since BCM has an emphasis on equipping and mobilizing students, some can even be a part of NGU’s BCM worship band and/or leadership team.

NGU may have different methods when it comes to BCM operations, but like many other universities such as Clemson, University of South Carolina and even the University of North Georgia, NGU’s strives to give students a place to spiritually grow. This is the mission of BCM.

“Fount” meets in Hamlin Recital Hall on Thursdays at 7:17 p.m. the time of the meeting is another unique aspect to NGU. The reason 7:17 was decided, was run with the theme of “Fount” and give reference to Revelation 7:17.

It says, “For the Lamb in the midst of the throne will be their shepherd, and he will guide them to springs of living water, and God will wipe away every tear from their eyes.”

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