God is in in the renewal business here at Portland Metro Episcopal Campus Ministry. First we are sporting a new name. Formerly Episcopal Campus Ministry at PSU, our new name reflects the fact that we have students from George Fox University, Clark Community College, Portland Community College, Oregon Health and Sciences University, as well as many from Portland State University – Oregon’s largest institution of higher learning.
Speaking of new, allow me to introduce myself as the new PMECM Chaplain. When Josh Kingsley, our former chaplain, was called to increased parish work late last year, I was hired to continue developing our campus ministry presence in Portland. As a very newly ordained priest (September 6, 2016), I maintain a campus ministry presence, meet with students one-on-one, and help develop a ministry community. In addition to my ⅓ time appointment with PMECM, I work ½ time as Missioner for Youth and Young Adults at Trinity Cathedral. This pairing allows me to use some of the Cathedral resources like meeting and office space that contribute to my work at PMECM. Many interesting possibilities lie ahead in collaborative work between the two programs.
PMECM has a new format as well. While in the previous year we offered services to students in one-on-one support, we are moving in the direction of providing and supporting student community as well. For example we have aligned with the Wednesday night Trinity Cathedral programs by offering free dinner to students, a weekly reading group, as well as a weekly sung Compline in the Cathedral.
Another really great development has been increased relationships this year with other diocesan ministries including OSU, U of O, and Willamette University campus ministries. As a group we are working to stay connected with high schoolers who matriculate to institutions of of higher learning wherever they may be. Oregon Episcopal Campus Ministries have planned outings together, such as our Stations of the Resurrection hike this past spring and our half day beach retreat in October. Coming up we are planning a 2017 ECM spring break retreat. Portland Metro and Oregon State Campus ministries recently received a grant from The Episcopal Church for a joint photo exhibit Faith Marks, the working title of the exhibit, will offer folks the opportunity to share their faith related tattoos and the stories surrounding them as well as serve as a fundraiser for our programs. I am excited to be working in campus ministry. It is a joy working with such wonderful people and I look forward to the places God will lead us next. Thank you for your support and prayers.
The Rev. Marlene Mutchler