College campuses can take a beating from certain corners as places where learning can mean God is not exactly welcome.
It really couldn’t be further from the truth.
Just like the old adage about “no atheists in foxholes,” college can be a pressure-cooker situation that might bring people to their faith, let them explore questions or help them find a new belief system.
At Penn State, students can hold the touchstones of their religious convictions in many different ways via the Center for Spiritual and Ethical Development.
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Christians of most every stripe can find a family of like-minded believers at University Park. From the Paterno Catholic Center to Eisenhower Chapel, from the Meditation Chapel to the Worship Hall, the Pasquerilla Spiritual Center is a soulful home for Catholics, Lutherans and an assortment of Christian groups.
But the cross isn’t the only symbol you will find revered at Pasquerilla.
While some are preparing for Easter, Jewish students have been awaiting Passover. It is also a meeting place for Hindus and Muslims, for Buddhists and pagans. There are those who strive to know themselves better through meditation or yoga. Even the Penn State Atheist/Agnostic Association keeps office hours there.
Some faiths find other homes on campus, at the Willard Building or the HUB-Robeson Cultural Center.
Others congregate nearby. Methodist, Episcopal, Orthodox and other churches welcome Penn State students to share their worship services.
And that just covers faith as an extracurricular activity. More students and faculty delve into faith as a field of study, looking at the many faces of God from historical, literary and theological standpoints every day.
God is definitely welcome at Penn State. And if he’s not a fan, why is the sky blue and white?