A Letter to DCF Alumni
This year has been flying by as I’m sure you can all remember from your time at Darden and in DCF! We just completed Q1 exams, so our First Years are relieved and Second Years are already gearing up for Christmas break.
And in the midst of classes, networking events, and recruiting/re-recruiting, we are seeing God’s work to bring our students peace that passes all understanding. Here are a few of the ways Christ has been moving during Q1…
The club fair added almost 50 new members to DCF this year. Many of these students, faculty, and staff are mature in the faith and want to ensure they keep Christ first in their lives despite all the distractions that can take away from that focus. But there are also quite a few who signed up to join the club and grow deeper in their walk or simply to learn about Jesus and see what the gospel is all about. We are praying for both of these groups to come closer to each other and to the Lord during their time at Darden.
The club kicked off the year with a Welcome Back BBQ to encourage the new members to form relationships with one another and with the Second Years in DCF. It was a great opportunity to meet other believers and start to build the DCF family. We also participated in a “faith in business” panel during OneDarden week. This panel included members representing Judaism, Islam, Buddhism, Mormonism, and Christianity, and was designed to expose the student body to various religious traditions that exist in the workplace. Godwin Marfo-Ahenkorah represented DCF and spoke of his experience growing up as a Christian in Ghana. The stories about his faith driving which industries to pursue and which to avoid was interesting and I believe opened the eyes of many attendees. We trust that God will use Godwin’s testimony to work in the lives of all those who attended the panel.
Arguably the most exciting event of Q1 was the Fall Retreat at the Skylark Nature Preserve and Lodge. We had about 30 believers out for the weekend, which included an evening of worship led by a Second Year (Pedro Lemos), a First Year (Cameron Brock), and a partner (Tim Scott); a dinner and bonfire with s’mores; a morning of reflection and prayer; and a very insightful guest speaker, Justin Earley, who led a workshop to develop ways to intentionally schedule God into hectic schedules. Justin’s message was particularly resonant. Many DCF members have put his recommendations into action, including reading scripture before using the cell phone each morning, taking a Sabbath day to rest each week, having an hour of purposeful conversation with a trustworthy friend every week, and turning the phone off for an hour every day to be more present in our daily lives. These small habits have brought calm amidst the busy Darden schedule and are helping the DCF family grow closer to Christ.
I hope you are excited by hearing a bit about what the Lord is doing back here at Darden. DCF has been so encouraging for me, so it motivates me to hear about others who are also experiencing God’s grace with our club. Please reach out if you are ever in Charlottesville—we would love to have you swing by one of our club events and share your story about how your faith in Christ has impacted your personal and professional life since graduation.