Every Thursday a Christian worship service called Church on Thursdays is held in the college’s spiritual centre from 7 to 8:30 p.m., featuring music and a sermon.
The idea for Church on Thursdays comes from the University of Ottawa’s Church on Wednesdays, a non-denominational service for students founded jointly by the Church of the Messiah and Calvary Fellowship, two Ottawa-based churches.
Algonquin’s program began Jan. 8 after Yuriy Derkach, the chaplain in charge of running the campus ministry, met with leaders of the Church on Wednesdays group.
“We were praying about it, and said, ‘okay, we’ve got to do something in the evenings,’” said Derkach.
“There was a demand for quite some time.”
Derkach said the campus ministry had lacked the resources to set up its own service.
One of those resources is a sound system the Church of the Messiah was looking to buy for $6,000. Half had been raised as of Nov. 30, according to the church’s website.
The service on Jan. 15 featured live music for 20 minutes, with an audience of 15 people.
A band made up of four members of the churches that helped found Church on Thursdays provided the music.
Daniel Gilman, a member of the band, said there are a lot of students that need, “something more.”
“This is like their oasis,” said Gilman.
A sermon delivered after the music by Peter Mahaffey went on for close to an hour, touching on topics such as the loving wrath of God and popular music singer Beyoncé.
Mahaffey believes the openness with which Beyoncé, a married Christian woman, treats her sexuality is corroding the morals of our society.
Algonquin student Susan Mathew attended Jan. 15.
“It’s really refreshing,” said Mathew.
“Coming from all your baggages of college, you feel light.”
Of the lack of participants, Derkach said there had been 40 the week before, but could not explain the drop in attendance on Jan. 15.