Friday’s at TCU

At TCU, from Tuesday through Thursday, students enjoy a daily meet at the chapel right before lunch. An interesting fact is that as enjoyable as this time is, it largely builds momentum for a much more intimate, fun-oriented gathering every Friday, named Koinonia. The noun, as widely known in Christian circles, is derived from the Greek word ‘κοινωνία’, describing intimateappening such as fellowship or partnership, and that perfectly paints what Friday gatherings in TCU look and feel like.

Right after the first and second class periods, students can be seen settling into smaller groups mainly based on their year and track. In the English track, freshmen and sophomore students meet together, while the junior and senior students do the same. Other students majoring in Global Studies enjoy a special joint gathering with other Japanese-track students taking the same major. Occasionally, bigger gatherings can be seen throughout the campus whenthe Japanese and English-speaking students merge for fun activities.

Koinonia is known for being a super relaxed, student led, fun and God-seeking time, hence why it is greatly cherished by all. In the English track, students get to choose a topic or activity they take interest in and lead the rest of the group through it. The boundary is as limitless as your imagination permits. Hence, students get to witness sessions that engage in subjects as grim as “The religious politicization of public holidays in Japan”, to others as amusing as just going outside to paint on a canvas, all centered on knowing God better, by the end of the shared time.

One student described Koinonia as ‘tranquil’, explaining that “it is such a fun break from the chapel rhythm which is more solemn and knowledge-intensive. Koinonia on the other hand leaves room for ‘silliness’ and for students to talk about whatever it is that interests them to their peers”. Another student describes it as a ‘closet’, adding that “it is such an intimate setting in which your knowledge of group members increases tremendously. You get to not only know your fellow students but also your teacher with whom you spend an entire year”.

The Psalmist writes: “Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!” (Psalm 133:1) Fridays at TCU are a clear depiction of this.

Written by John