“The main thing I took from interacting with CCO campus ministers was the importance that everything is God’s, and can be done for God,” says Daniel Ryan. “A temptation for Christians is this idea that it’s better to be a minister or missionary of some kind than some other, ‘less holy’ occupation. CCO staff taught, rightly, that we are all called to different areas of life, to different occupations, geographic locations, and demographics, but we all serve the same Lord, and we can—and should—all demonstrate redemption in all we do.”
Daniel connected to the CCO’s ministry during his undergraduate years at Penn State University, and today, he is living out his faith through his work as an electrical engineer in Germany, where he and his wife, Kristi, live with their infant daughter.
“I try to share my faith through my works more than my words—especially since I’m not fluent in German,” says Daniel. “I work with military personnel, and simply being a good example in life and encouraging them to pursue right paths is often more than they ever receive elsewhere.”
Daniel was introduced to the CCO-sponsored Christians in Action fellowship during his freshman year at Penn State when he met CCO staff member Denny Mitchell at the church he was attending. He was actively involved for all five years of his Penn State career.
“I arrived at college intending to find a fellowship, preferably with a reformed background,” Daniel remembers. “I enjoyed it from the start, and never sought another fellowship. As I became better acquainted with several CCO staff members, I was impressed by their honesty, authenticity and exhortations. They shared openly their struggles, shortcomings, and hardships, and welcomed us, in a non-pressuring way, to do the same. They also challenged us to understand and critique the culture in which we live, and work to redeem it for Christ. Their work helped me change the way I view movies, TV, books, and other cultural aspects, as well as striving to live a life pleasing to God. I was on the leadership team of our fellowship for several years, including a stint as president. That experience certainly gave me some leadership and conflict resolution experience that I’ve since found valuable in the corporate world.”
The Jubilee conference was also formative in Daniel’s life—he attended all five years. “I especially appreciated the book table—access to good, thought-provoking, hard-to-find reading material is always welcome! I also enjoyed the fellowship with other Christians and the speakers in particular held appeal for me. I enjoyed getting their perspective on applying their faith in their chosen fields.
“Penn State has many Christian fellowships, many of which were excellent in their own regard, but I feel blessed to have found the CCO. Without the CCO, I suspect I would have been less studious and critical of the culture in which I live. The time spent there encouraged me to be a true student of the Word, to never stop learning, and to claim everything as God’s.”