Greene County News
CEDARVILLE — During Cedarville soccer player Bradley Schluter’s first collegiate stop at Lee University, he participated in weekly Fellowship of Christian Athletes events and witnessed growth in relationships between the various sports teams as well as the athletic department as a whole.
He made some of his closest friends and valued the impact it had on him and his fellow student-athletes.
When he came to Cedarville, one of the first things he noticed was how separated the teams felt from one another — each one tending to hang among themselves.
Last February, Bradley attended the Athletes in Action Winter Retreat, a gathering intended to encourage spiritual growth among student-athletes from surrounding universities. Reminiscent of his days at Lee, he once again witnessed the power of community and vulnerability as a body.
He returned to Cedarville with a strong motivation to create this kind of community among his fellow student-athletes along with one word of direction from God: “act.”
He began talking to various leaders, coaches and professors to see what could become of the ideas.
With athletic department support, these conversations resulted in the formation of a leadership group which then led to CU Fellowship, which seeks to unite the athletic department through biblical community and to develop leaders who are passionate about discipling others.
CU Fellowship meets every other Monday night as a community of about 80-100 student-athletes. Each week, a different Cedarville team teaches the group games and/or songs and shares about what they are learning in their walk of faith. As everyone learns more about that team and its culture, incorrect perceptions are dismantled and trust and respect grow.
In addition, two athletes from each team participate in a discipleship group led by assistant men’s soccer coach, Grant Knight. Coach Knight is passionate about encouraging these leaders to understand a higher view of the Gospel rooted in both the Old and New Testaments.
The athletes are forging a deeper connection that transforms their own lives and trickles down to make a positive impact on each team.