Reformed University Fellowship (RUF) has started a new chapter at Kansas State University in Manhattan, Kan. The Rev. Jon Dunning, the RUF campus pastor at K-State, is laying the groundwork for reaching its nearly 25,000 students with the Gospel.
Dunning and his family arrived on campus in August after nearly 10 years of church ministry in the Kansas City area. As a pastor to middle and high school students, Dunning worked with many young people who went on to attend K-State. When the opportunity arrived to start an RUF chapter there in conjunction with pastor Brian Hough’s PCA church plant in Manhattan, the job seemed like a natural next step for Dunning.
Preparing a new campus ministry means Dunning spends most of his time building a financial support base, getting to know the university culture, and meeting students. Because Dunning and Hough knew some students from previous ministries, Dunning was able to quickly assemble two Bible studies.
Though K-State is a warm, welcoming campus, Dunning said it is challenging to represent an organization that is unfamiliar to most students and their families. Because the church plant, Manhattan Presbyterian, is the town’s only PCA church, Dunning has to spend time introducing the region’s churches to the work of RUF.
Still, he is eager for the opportunity to help Christian students own their faith and to help non-Christian students wrestle with the truth claims of the Bible.
“We are here because the Gospel is true, but also because we long to see the PCA grow in the Midwest, and we think one of the ways that can happen is through campus ministry,” Dunning said. “When students get involved [in RUF] and then graduate, the Lord can use this in building His church.”