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In some ways, the fact that people are open to anything means they are open to you living differently and not partying in the way they do. There is that hedonistic (that makes it sound way too serious!) undertone to uni culture, so living ‘in but not of’ comes to a head in terms of going on nights out and wanting to do that in a way that glorifies God. I have so much fun, I go out and stuff like that, but that’s an easy place to slip up, just because the culture is so ‘one way’ in those places.

I think church is massive, when you look at other students, they don’t have any family in Birmingham outside of their student bubble. Having a wider family to fit into, being part of a community where you’re loved and people watch out for you, care for you and mentor you. It’s a place you can always come back to. 

Last year I brought a friend to one of the CU big question events and remember thinking: “That was OK, but the speaker got X, Y and Z mildly wrong!” But it made a massive difference for her perspective. She went into the talk thinking that all of Christianity was nonsense and came out thinking the resurrection probably happened. That was amazing! She is not there yet but she has come to church loads and knows it’s a community where she’s accepted and loved and is exploring what Jesus has to say in her life. That’s been really cool, and there’s been similar experiences with a few other friends.

Seb is a philosophy student at Birmingham university.

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