Movement Builds from Basement to Classrooms

Student Venture challenges Ohio teens' lives and high school

  • by Bill Hunt
Photo by Rebecca Moody

The idea came from 3 high-school buddies hanging out in Tyler Moody's basement.

Just a week before Fast Break, a spiritually challenging conference organized by Cru's high-school ministry, Student Venture, the Ohio teens lamented their waning spiritual fervor.

"We wanted to live out our Christian lives more genuinely and be more fearless in our school," says Tyler, 16, a sophomore. "We were searching for an idea that would make Christ known in school."

The next weekend at Fast Break, Tyler and his buddies, Nikhil Vengal and Will Adams, christened the idea "Tractus" -- Latin for "movement" -- after a conference speaker urged the 250 students to take responsibility for reaching their campuses with the gospel.

"Our goal is for Student Venture to be student-led, but staff-directed," says staff member Tim Ehrhart. "We challenged them to build a spiritual movement and they took off with it."

Tyler used Facebook, a social networking Web site, to promote the first Tractus meeting, and called every sophomore in the student directory. 50 kids showed up.

"It was awesome," Nikhil says. "We had Muslims and atheists at that first meeting."

At the second meeting, after Tyler explained how he came to know God, a speaker connected with the 73 students by recounting his spiritual journey; 7 prayed and received Christ.