Tom Hart is the RUF Campus Minister at East Carolina University. Tom was born and raised in Albany, Georgia. While studying at the University of Georgia, he got involved with RUF, where he encountered Jesus for the first time. He also met his wife, Chané, in history class, who is originally from South Africa but grew up in Greenville, South Carolina. After college, Tom served as an RUF intern at Auburn University from 2008 to 2011, where he developed a deep love for college ministry. Having spent three years in the Midwest while Tom earned a Master’s of Divinity from Covenant Theological Seminary, the Harts were thrilled to move back to the South, where boiled peanuts and sweet tea are easier to come by. Tom and Chané spend most of their free time thoroughly enjoying their three children, Simon (born in 2012), Ragan (born in 2014), and Bauer (born 2016).
RUF STANDS FOR REFORMED UNIVERSITY FELLOWSHIP.
WHAT WE DO
The purpose of RUF is to build a community on the college campus that reaches students of divergent beliefs and doubts with the message of the gospel and equips them to love and serve Jesus and his church. As we shape our lives around the gospel we have the opportunity to participate in God's work of changing lives, healing our world, building community, and renewing our culture. We aim to do this by pursuing the following goals:
Growth in Grace
The way in which we grow in the Christian life is the same way in which we enter it - by receiving Jesus and relying on what he has done for us by his grace. That is why we are devoted to helping one another use the means of grace God has given us to promote our growth in Christ-likeness. We affirm that deep, lasting change occurs by studying the Bible, developing a prayer life, participating in worship, and forming authentic relationships with others.
Evangelism and Missions
We believe the gospel is true, and, therefore, it cannot be kept to ourselves. We are committed to thoughtfully and respectfully communicating the gospel through the words we speak, the deeds we perform, and the community we embody so that we might give others the opportunity to discover the true story of God's grace. And since the salvation Jesus brings is comprehensive and affects the whole person, we are committed to tangibly expressing God's care for the world by seeking wholeness for the poor, justice for the oppressed, and restoration for creation.
Fellowship and Service
Jesus not only calls us to follow him as individuals, but also gathers us into a community in which we learn to apply the gospel to every aspect of our lives. In our relationships with one another, we strive to reflect the countercultural values of the gospel, and as we do we provide the world around us with a glimpse of who God is and what his coming kingdom entails. In light of the fact that God calls us to himself in order to be a vehicle of blessing to others, we are committed to sacrificially serving others on our campus and in our world.
Biblical World and Life View
Christianity is a way of seeing all of life. Rather than dividing the world into sacred and secular realms, we recognize that every sphere of life belongs to God and provides us with an opportunity to serve him. We aim, therefore, to discern our unique vocations within the world and to pursue them with excellence, distinctiveness, and integrity so that our university as well as our culture might experience the renewal of the gospel.