Letter: Students without faith don’t need to struggle

My name is Christjahn Beck and I am currently the vice president of the ISU chapter of the Atheist and Agnostic Society here on campus. 

In the last year, there have been many stories in the Daily that dealt directly with matters of faith. The separation of church and state issues brought up by the Hobby Lobby ruling, Bibles in the Memorial Union hotel rooms and the Family Leadership Summit recently at Stephens Auditorium come to mind immediately. 

These stories usually prompt a very interesting — and sometimes heated — exchange both in the halls on campus and often within the pages of the opinion and editorial section of the Daily itself. 

There are several well organized Christian groups on campus as well as groups for students of other faith traditions where students can go to discuss these issues in a religious setting. Often, however, I worry that there are many students who are unaware that there are similar opportunities available for students who are either struggling with their faith or have left their faith altogether. 

It is my experience that many students struggle with the faith of their childhood during their time in college, and I wanted to make sure that everyone knows that if you are one of these students, you are not alone. 

I can tell from the passionate responses I often see in the Daily that there are many students out there who fit this description. 

The ISU Atheist and Agnostic Society offers both an open environment where students can come to discuss matters of faith, spirituality, secularity or any other relevant topic as well as a support system for students who may be struggling with these issues and are looking for a place to work through them. We meet every Monday night at 7 p.m. in the Gold Room at the Memorial Union and operate the Ask An Atheist Booth outside of the Hub on Thursdays from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. We are open to anyone and everyone, religious or otherwise. 

We try to offer a service that is a valuable addition to student life here at Iowa State.

So once again, if you have read any these articles in the Daily and find that you disagree with the religious justifications being offered, you are not alone. If you have theological questions that you are uncomfortable talking about with your faith community, you are not alone. If you have just come to Iowa State or are just beginning to question much of what you have grown up being taught, you are not alone. We would love to hear from you.

Contact us at [email protected] or come see us Mondays at 7 p.m. in the Gold Room in the Memorial Union starting Sept. 8.