In the late 1960s Morris Greidanus, now a retired CRC pastor, called on students at the University of Toronto to do something different and quieter than causing unrest on campus. He called on them to worship God. So in 1968, Greidanus started Hart House Fellowship with support from Christian Reformed Home Missions.
Designed as an alternative community on campus, Hart House Fellowship offered lectures, film nights, and discussion groups for students.
Now simply known as the campus ministry at the University of Toronto, it’s still going strong 41 years later.
“You have to acknowledge God’s faithfulness in this longevity,” says Brian Walsh, who has been campus pastor for the past 15 years.
Walsh was an undergraduate at the university in 1974. After he started participating in Hart House Fellowship activities, he began assisting Pastor John Veenstra, who succeeded Greidanus as campus minister, with evangelism and the weekly film series.
When Veenstra departed in the late 1970s, Walsh became even more active, helping campus pastor Dirk Pierik with a series of “vision conferences” throughout Ontario.
In 1995, after years of service, Walsh was officially appointed as the fourth campus pastor. Today he leads a team of four permanent and two part-time staff members, who all help lead worship, Bible studies, pastoral counseling, film discussions and seminars, and a weekly dinner fellowship.
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