Slice o’ Life Revised

Filed Under (Uncategorized) by Emily on 09-12-2012

For I am not ashamed of the gospel ; it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who has faith…. -Romans 1:16

One reason I enjoy being a part of Oasis is that I get to play my violin, Ozgood. I get to play great songs that honor God. When I experience fellowship with my Oasis friends, God’s presence feels very near to me. It is so fun to be a part of something that has a positive effect on my fellow students’ lives.

For the past few years, we have gone to the Gospel Mission to perform a worship service for our last Sunday before Christmas break. It is quite a humbling experience to worship for and with people who have had difficult times, but still seek to fill their spiritual hunger.

I ask Cendejas how the Oasis group got started. “It’s been around for about three or four years. Jackie Lincoln and Alyssa Filipek, who have both since graduated, started the group. They felt there was a need for a new worship group on campus,” says Cendejas.

Since January of 2012, Cendejas has been the worship leader for Oasis. He took over after Filipek graduated. When asked about the goal of Oasis, he says, “The purpose of Oasis is to establish a place where people can worship Jesus Christ freely, where they can grow spiritually, and have a fellowship experience. We hope that the sense of community people feel at Oasis will go beyond the church walls and into other parts of their life, like school and home.” Oasis currently meets at 7:00 p.m. on Sunday evenings at Grace United Methodist Church, next to Morningside College’s science building.

Cendejas hopes to reach those who are spiritually confused or lost. “We want Oasis to encourage people in their relationship with Jesus Christ. When we come to worship together, we are the body of Christ. We hope to grow in our faith by using the talents God has given us. People want to serve, whether musically, technologically or by speaking at Oasis.” There are many musicians that contribute to Oasis: guitarists, a violinist, singers and even a beat box drummer.

Paige Potter attends Oasis frequently. She says it reminds her of growing up in the church. “I always went to church on Sunday. My parents dragged me even when I didn’t feel like going. I’m really glad they made me go, because of all the great music and message. Since Oasis is on Sunday nights, I don’t have to get up early in the morning.”

Director of Campus Ministries, Kathy Martin, says that Oasis has not always been at Grace Methodist. “We started out going from dorm to dorm every week. Then the church decided to let us open the church on Sunday nights. It was a great opportunity, because there was more space.”

Martin talks about how the name of the group came to be. “The word “oasis” means a place of refreshment in a dry place. It is a way to get revived in “the desert,” she says. “Oasis is intentionally spiritually refreshing. It is a time to focus on our relationship with God and experience fellowship with other people. For me personally, it’s been really good to have Oasis. I want to have a worship experience that is unique from a church setting. Oasis is a lot more laid back.”

Although Oasis has been successful in the past years, Martin and some members of the worship band believe there needs to be a change for next semester. There is not as many people attending Oasis as there used to be. “We’re going to have new hours and a new location. We plan to meet on Wednesdays at 11:35 in the Olson Student Center. It has been a wonderful experience, but we have new students and they need something different,” says Martin.

Hopefully, the changes will reach more students and Oasis will continue to change people’s hearts.



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