InterVarsity (IV) – “my grandma and aunt’s best friend were convinced the ministry was a cult”

This is an excerpt from a Reddit post titled: Do I Belong to a Cult?

The author details how his/her involvement in InterVarsity (IV) as a leader lead him to become estranged from his/her family, as far as taking up 18-23 hours per week and making the author miss important family events.

“In the comments below, I decided to disclose the name of the organization. I was/am involved with InterVarsity Christian Fellowship.”

“As my campus ministry began to take up more and more of my time and money, my parents became less and less pleased with my involvement.”

In some ways, my campus ministry was a part-time job: the first few weeks of the school year were spent doing outreach, hosting game nights and trips, and having one on ones with the people in my dorm. Between my bible study, bible study prep meeting, large group meeting, and leaders meeting, I was spending about 8 hours a week doing “scheduled” ministry. Another 10-15 hours were spent socializing with non-Christians, attending church, meeting up for prayer, etc. …

“It was around this time that my parents started throwing around words like “cult” and “brainwashed.” I learned that my aunt had been involved in the same campus ministry thirty years ago, and that my grandma and aunt’s best friend were convinced the ministry was a cult. My mom had never gotten along well with my aunt, and was quick to make the same accusations about my involvement.”

“Again, I wanted to try to involve my family in the decision. I had several tumultuous phone conversations with my parents. They believed that my staff workers were using me for their own gain, and that they had no concern for my academics or financial stability. Their concerns were founded on half truths: Living in the dorms would indeed be another financial burden, and I would face substantially more difficult classes my junior year.”

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