University Chaplain Sara Barton gives the first sermon at the Well in spring 2022. The Well meets every Thursday at 8 p.m. Photos by Sammie Wuensche
The Well provides students with the weekly opportunity to worship, reflect on a sermon and pray as a community.
Senior Blake Farley, one of the Culture and Hospitality student leads for the Well, said the gathering seeks to be a space for everyone regardless of where they might be on their faith journey.
“Our goal is to be a source of life for the student community,” Farley said. “It’s so that we can fill up students who are learning and digging into their own personal faith or just personal journeys.”
Pepperdine students started the Well to have a worship night on campus different than the acapella Church of Christ services on Sunday mornings. Those students expanded their ideas and formed Well Collective — a band that plays for California churches, the Table and occasionally for the Well.
As of this fall semester, Pepperdine’s Hub for Spiritual Life and their worship team ran the production of the Well, wrote Ko Ku, Pepperdine’s worship chaplain in a Feb. 4 email to the Graphic.
The event begins with coffee and snacks, then the worship starts. The evening concludes with a member of the Hub or a Pepperdine student preaching a sermon and ends with more worship.
The Hub for Spiritual Life chose the theme of community for the spring semester sermons during the Well, Farley said.
“We are really trying to dig in deep and talk with the whole student body about what it looks like to be a community that has faith in mind and heart,” Farley said.
The Well seeks to include all aspects of the Pepperdine community and every individual regardless of faith background.
Junior Nick Barron is a member of the Pepperdine worship team and plays guitar, keyboard and sings.
“It [the Well] feels more like a big, all-inclusive, wide-reaching expression of Pepperdine worship which is something I really care about,” Barron said.
Farley said many students who attend the Well describe it as an impactful experience while at Pepperdine, himself included.
“It [the Well] really is a well that’s a source of life on campus; having a weekly time every week where we’re able to get together as a community for no purpose other than to be together, to sing and to worship,” Farley said.
Several students this past semester made the decision to declare their faith publicly during the Well and they made their way up to the Brock House where Present Jim Gash volunteered to baptize them. Their friends and the community at the Well were encouraged to join. First-year Kate Ho said she went to the Well as much as possible this past semester and was one of the students Gash baptized.
“The Well was a consistent place where I can worship and just be in community with the people I go to school with,” Ho said.
The Well provides students the opportunity to connect with their peers in an environment outside a class or a club, Barron said.
“It [the Well] has been a consistent part of my time at Pepperdine as much as I’ve been in Malibu,” Farley said. “When I was a freshman and really new to Pepperdine, really new to Southern California, I would go to the Well on Thursday night, and I met a few friends there that I hadn’t met before.”
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