SGA discusses Ministry Committee

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Student Government Association had a spirited debate and dialogue on multiple issues during Wednesday’s debate.

The two main debates that SGA had was over a resolution to give approval of the Recommendation of the Mission and Ministry Committee to enhance the services of the Department of Campus Ministry and an effort to encourage Saint Louis University to officially sign the “St. Francis Pledge” to honor the Catholic Climate Covenant.

“There was a concern that campus ministry was only serving Christian students. This resolution would change the perception of Campus Ministry so that is truly serving the entire campus,” Vice President of Internal Affairs Scott Hessel said. Hessel also is the head of the newly formed Mission and Minstry Committee.

The resolution recommended that the second floor of Wuller Hall, where campus ministry is located, be turned into an area for faith based Charted Student Organizations like the Muslim Student Association, Interfaith Alliance, and many other student organizations.

Senators expressed concern about exclusively allocating the building for faith based CSOs as other groups and organizations expressed interest in the area as some of Wuller Hall is used for Law School administrative offices which will be moving at the end of next academic year.

Senator Parry Draper, the Parks College Senator, expressed concern that his constituency would not be able to utilize the space for Parks College students and that other students having their voice heard on how the space should be utilized.

The bill was tabled for the next two weeks so other recommendations could be heard.

The other main point of debate was the presentation and senate resolution to encourage SLU to officially sign the “St Francis Pledge” to honor the Catholic Climate Covenant.

The Catholic Climate Covenant, according the organization’s website, is an organization to take responsibility for our contribution to climate change and do what we do best: be advocates for those who will be left out of the public policy debate on climate change.

The “St. Francis Pledge” is a 30-page document broken up into five sections asking its participants to:  pray, learn, assess, act and advocate.

Senators debated whether the bill would be an endorsement of the political statement. Some senators believed that SGA should not make the decision but that individual senators should make the pledge, not as a collective statement by SGA.  After fierce debate, the senators approved the resolution 34-16-1.

SGA approved the creation and seating of the Mission and Ministry committee. SGA also approved the spot funding for the Asian American Association and Korean Student Association to go to the Midwest Asian American Student Union conference at the University of Illinois.

SGA also approved the resolution to create an initiative to donate leftover food from Griesedieck Dining Hall to Campus Kitchen. Senators Blake Exline and Krishi Peddada created the initiative.