I was home all last week, like a lot of people. All the universities I know have closed and moved courses online. RUF has suspended all in-person activity and has likewise moved our ministry online. You can read more details on my blog post on our Northeast website: https://rufnortheast.org/2020/03/16/facing-the-coronavirus/.
So you might suspect that campus ministers have little to do now, and area coordinators even less. Not so! The first work of campus ministers has been to contact their students, to see how they are doing, and to provide any assistance. Some students needed help moving out of their dorms early, some were distraught at the disruption of the semester and needed comfort, some were going home to unhealthy living situations and needed counsel. Campus ministers are continuing their ministry by text, email, phone, video, and other virtual means. They are busy setting up virtual Bible studies and many are providing virtual Large Group Meetings.
Area coordinators are fielding questions, communicating policies and late-breaking developments, and checking on campus ministers. We are meeting by video conference every Monday afternoon. This week I have had many email conversations with RUF presbytery committee chairmen and other coordinators about placing new campus ministers. Friday night I joined the Brown/RISD Large Group Meeting online and heard a wonderful sermon by Lucas Dourado. I found a few hours to help Ruth organize some drawers and worked a little on a house project, but otherwise my week was packed.
Next week looks to be more of the same. So far everyone we know is healthy. We’re praying daily for God to relent and stop the spread of the coronavirus.