I recall leaving for university many years ago and my mother urging me to be cautious of the attempts of professors and others who would try to discredit my faith. She was right. Those exciting early years at Ottawa U. opened up my eyes to a new world of knowledge but it seemed that many shared a skepticism of the importance of Christian beliefs. (This fact was even more disappointing knowing that the university had been founded by the Oblate Missionaries.) At the time, I was lucky enough to encounter a campus-based Christian Fellowship group and found encouragement with them through informal get-togethers. It provided some spiritual support but I was looking for something more.
A couple of years ago, my own daughter, Katie, headed off to university and I'm sure I gave her the same pep talk as my mother gave to me. We heard about CCO shortly before she started her first semester, and she was greeted in orientation week by someone at the "popcorn table" and she's never looked back since! She's had the university experience that I wished that I had enjoyed! She's had a network of Christian friends that have encouraged her in her faith while teaching her to be the best steward of her time and talents. The young people who I've met through Kate are so inspiring - it's so reassuring to know that there are university students who do place Christ first in their lives, forming their decisons based on Him and seeking to serve God with their lives. As pointed out by CCO, "these are our future leaders, policy makers, and teachers!"
I'm not sure who might read this but I just wanted to offer words of encouragement to other parents who might have a son or daughter headed to university, that this is one parent who can say that it's made a world of difference to see the wonderful change in my own daughter and I'm so thankful that CCO was there!
CCO started over 20 years ago (1988) when one couple felt God calling them to evangelize the youth. They stepped out in faith and from those humble beginnings, their efforts have touched hundreds of students. The philosophy of CCO is to share the gospel of Christ with one person at a time, who in turn will be able to share that faith with others!
CCO continues to grow but here are the campuses where they can be found at present:
Saskatoon: Saskatoon University
Halifax: Dalhousie University
Ottawa: University of Ottawa, Carleton University
Kingston: Queen's University
Vancouver: Simon Fraser University and University of British Columbia.
Quebec City: Laval University
For more info, visit their website...