In 2006 students from different student groups across the ACU campus came together for what we be the first annual Justice Week. Since its inception, Justice Week has helped bring the campus together around issues ranging from fresh water and food to sex trafficking and slavery. Christians have holy obligations to love those around them and those far away. Our duty as sons and daughters of a living God are to be the hands and feet of God. Justice Week is a special tradition because it represents the very best of what ACU students, faculty, and staff are about.
The ACU Community helps support local programs like Wildcat Kids and Big Brother/Big Sister, it marches into the dark corners of the world with Stephen’s Children and the International Justice Mission; it reaches across the nation to take part in spring break and weekend campaigns. The ACU Community takes the duty of loving our neighbors very seriously. It is important to remember the legacy of service and outreach that was built by past students, faculty and staff.
When the first Justice Week was being planned there were serious obstacles. Student groups had not often worked together, but were used to competing for small group chapel attendees and prime table space in the campus center. Space and logistics were obstacles as well, where would you put so many student groups? How would they be advertised? Would the chapel program allow recognition of such an event in a daily chapel? At the time these obstacles appeared insurmountable.
It took the unified efforts of several people to make Justice Week an ACU tradition. Student leaders came together and lobbied the Student Association for funding, coordinating their requests so that the week would be fully funded. Local organizations and international entities were represented at the first week. The then Deans of spiritual life and students plugged the event and dedicated chapel to Justice Week. Joel Swedlund worked minor miracles to provide space, tables, electricity, and a hundred other details that made the expo in the campus center a success.
As Justice Week continues to grow in prominence and involvement, it is important to remember the purpose behind it. We are called to be light in the darkness, to speak truth into chaos, and to seek justice. ACU students of every political persuasion, of every creed, of every social club come together year after year for something greater than themselves. The ACU community should be proud of its long heritage, and continue to use Justice Week as a way of highlighting its efforts.