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Sorority Faith

Nicole Kennedy

If I weren’t a Christian, I would’ve dropped my sorority a long time ago.

It may have happened towards the beginning of freshman year, when I was paired with a big who I didn’t really know. Maybe I would’ve quit my second semester, when I realized that my pledge sisters weren’t inviting me to parties because I didn’t drink. Or perhaps junior year, when I struggled through formal recruitment after studying abroad, I would’ve decided it wasn’t worth it anymore.

But instead of quitting when it got hard, I stayed in my chapter. Why? I made the decision that my sorority membership wasn’t about me.

From the very beginning, girls are taught to see sorority membership as an individualistic experience. Picture a group of sweet freshmen, terrified of rejection and eager for belonging. Imagine the incredible feeling of discovering a group of girls who instantly become your people. The genuine smiles, adorable outfits, and exciting bid-day celebrations that make you feel at home. Through the new member period, while fraternities push their pledges to perform tedious and exhausting tasks, sororities invite girls to themed brunches, match them with big sisters, and shower them with gifts and affection up to initiation day.

As a new member, I felt noticed and loved. Yet after the glitter fell and real life set in, I realized the reality of the situation: sorority life is not one endless slumber party. Friendships don’t magically form in chapter meetings or sisterhood events. Like most things in this world, sororities are comprised of flawed people who yearn for genuine connection.

It’s no surprise that many Christians choose to terminate their sorority memberships. When you see Greek Life as nothing but a flurry of frat parties, formals, and other excuses to binge-drink, it seems to systematically contradict Biblical values. After all, doesn’t God command us to abstain from drunkenness (Ephesians 5:18) and sexual immorality (Galatians 5:19)? Can you really enjoy the experience of frat parties without getting wasted? (No you can’t, I’ve tried, 0/10 would not recommend.) But if you don’t participate in these activities, is there any hope of actually getting to know people in the Greek system? These are all questions I’ve wrestled with throughout my four years as a sorority member.

Jesus was never a sorority girl, but He was part of the OG fraternity with His twelve bros, aka disciples. He turned water into wine! And He’s got quite a few insightful points.

Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith, and in purity. – 1 Timothy 4:12

    My prayer is not that you take them out of the world but that you protect them from the evil one. They are not of the world, even as I am not of it. – John 17:15-16

    So as a sorority girl, in but not of the world of Greek life, I’ve decided to use my sorority membership as a way to represent Jesus to people who don’t know Him too well. I’ve led a Bible study for my sisters, invited them to Campus Ministry events, and taken an amazing Little who I can talk to about faith and formal dresses in one sitting. While I certainly haven’t been a perfect Christian or a perfect sorority member, my experience demonstrates that the two aren’t mutually exclusive.

    So to all the girls who love Jesus and struggle with their place in sororities, I encourage you to view it as a mission field. By walking alongside your sisters, you are being Jesus to them in a tangible and inspiring way. If that’s not true sisterhood, I don’t know what is.

* photos via Pepperdine's Alpha Phi of which 3 M&H founders were members!