Photos by Omar Murphy
Worship at The Ascent is no longer limited to Regents’ Scholars.
The group is a biweekly worship gathering that now provides a space for every Pepperdine student to meet and worship together. The Ascent was initially formed for Regents’ Scholars from around the country to meet and socialize. The group is no longer exclusive to Regents Scholars.
“The environment is really laid-back and relaxing, it helps me feel closer to the worship’s purpose,” said freshman Cassidy Woodward, a regular participant of The Ascent.
Run primarily by a group of fellow Regents’ Scholars, The Ascent is dubbed as a night of “food, fellowship and worship.” The Ascent’s regular biweekly gatherings at the volleyball court by the DeBell and Miller houses offer a night of spiritual connection. Students can make new friends and hone their spiritual growth with the help of worship leaders who lead sermons and sing worship songs.
The breezy setting of DeBell and Miller’s volleyball courts allowed participants to worship outdoors in close proximity to nature. Its ocean-view setting helped create an atmosphere where students felt more grounded and connected to God.
Before worship started, students ate, hung out and discussed a plethora of topics. The Ascent was found to be popular among some students for providing a relaxed atmosphere. The club’s first gathering gained an attendance of about 30 students who said its intimate setting was a large factor for their interest.
“I feel comfortable praying and having conversations about faith with the friends I’ve made here,” Woodward said.
Alex Lehman, a student worship leader of the club, said the worship gatherings helped her feel more connected spiritually.
“The Ascent has been a good outlet for me to grow spiritually and to help others grow as well,” Lehman said.
The Ascent’s ultimate goal is to be a campus-wide event. Tyler Reed, the main leader of The Ascent and a member of the Regents’ Scholars Board, said the worship gatherings helped build a community of believers. Reed said that is the culture they aim to build with their gatherings.
“One of our main goals, is to also help freshmen feel more comfortable to take action and leadership roles,” Reed said.
All aspects of the gatherings are student-run.
“The Celebration Chapel is great, but it can be intimidating, which is why The Ascent is so great because it’s intimate,” Reed said.
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