Spirituality & Religious Life currently supports eight recognized religious communities and ten spiritual/religious student clubs. There is some overlap between these groups.
If you would like to start a religious, spiritual, or secular club of your own, please review the Clubs Manual and consult with the Assistant Director for Spirituality & Religious Life.
There are also many local religious communities in the area who welcome students. See our page about Off-Campus Communities and our Local Religious Ambassadors program.
Idunno Zen Buddhist Community
Zen simply means “meditation.” The purpose of Zen meditation, or zazen, is to cultivate a clear, centered, and focused mind. There is nothing cosmic or supernatural about Zen practice. Zen is focused completely on realizing the beauty and value of everyday existence, and our place in it. Zen is a way to help us get through the often difficult terrain of life. You don't have to give up your religious beliefs (or adopt any, for that matter) to enjoy the value of Zen meditation.
Weekly Zen Events:
- Zazen (meditation)— Tuesdays 11:00am in the Skalny Room
- Traditional Soto Zen Service— Wednesdays 5:00pm in Skalny Room
- Zazen and Discussion— Thursdays 2:00pm in Skalny Room
Agape Christian Fellowship
AGAPE Christian Fellowship is an evangelical Christian campus ministry that was established 18 years ago. We minister to students through teaching, training, and guiding them in the ways of our Lord Jesus during their years of undergraduate and graduate studies.
AGAPE Christian Fellowship gets their name from the Greek word αγάπη “agape” which means unconditional love. It is a college campus ministry serving the University of Rochester, Eastman School of Music, and Rochester Institute of Technology. Here at AGAPE Christian Fellowship, which the students refer to as ACF, we seek to learn more about the Lord and follow after Him.
We meet every Friday at the University of Rochester Campus or Rochester Institute of Technology. We seek to disciple students through small groups, large group meetings, accountability, serving the community, good Scriptural teachings, and fellowship. We also provide different outreach and serving opportunities as a part of the discipleship process for our students.
To learn more go to https://sites.google.com/site/rochesteragape/about-us
Brothers and Sisters in Christ (BASIC)
BASIC stands for “Brothers and Sisters in Christ.” We are a network of college students and churches in the Northeast that meet to enjoy life together, learn about God, and make a difference in the world. Students on over 30 campuses gather every week to worship God and inspire each other to live out their faith in Christ at school. Every semester, all of the students from dozens of universities gather together in Rochester, NY for 3 days of passionate worship, powerful teaching, and life-changing ministry. Since BASIC was founded in 1978, over 18,000 students from over 60 campuses and dozens of nations have been affected through these conferences. BASIC was founded at SUNY Oswego by Mike Cavanaugh, who heard clearly from the Lord:
BASIC meets every Wednesday at 7 pm to 9 pm!
To learn more go to http://thebasicsite.org/about/
Cru (Evangelical Christian)
Cru is a caring community passionate about connecting people to Jesus Christ.
Whether it be our large group gathering, our small group communities that meet in dorms, or our social events, we're all about creating a safe space for students from all walks of life to come and make new friends and learn what it looks like to follow Jesus! Join us!"
Hands of Fire (Cru deaf outreach)
Hands of Fire is for individuals who want to learn more about God's
Word, through American Sign Language, and meet more brothers
and sisters in Christ.
InterVarsity Christian Fellowship
We welcome students into caring, diverse communities where they can build friendships and explore Christian faith in the marketplace of ideas.
At many campuses we have more than one chapter, which may include separate outreaches to international students, nursing students, sororities and fraternities, athletes, artists, and ethnic minority groups, as well as faculty and career-specific graduate student chapters.
To learn more go to http://ivcf.rit.edu/
The Table Protestant Campus Ministry
Pastor Craig Swanson is the campus pastor for the Lutheran Episcopal Campus Ministry (aka "The Table"). Ordained in 1988, Pastor Craig is also serves as pastor at Transfiguration Lutheran Church in northeast Rochester, New York. He is married to Pastor Gail Swanson and they have two children; a daughter, age 24, and a son, age 20. His interest in youth and young adult ministry began during his college years and continued through seminary and throughout his ordained ministry.
Please join us at "the Table" – you are always welcome. A cost-free, home cooked community meal is provided immediately after services in the chapel's lower level Skalny Room.An ASL interpreter is provided for our worship services.
RIT Christians on Campus
We are Christians at RIT composed of believers in Christ from various backgrounds. And we stand absolutely for the faith common to all Christians. We love the Lord Jesus Christ and ever together in the 1st place in all things and have the utmost respect for his words. We meet simply as Christians without any denominational affiliation because we treasure the testimony of the oneness of the body of Christ. By having companions on campus, we hope to pursue him together to increase our personal and corporate enjoyment of Christ.
As we have many Chinese members, we will spare no efforts to make the truths in the Bible available to Chinese speaking students in school. By offering bilingual Bible study group and other unique activities, we aim to help all Chinese participants not only spiritually, but also humanly – to overcome language barriers and adapt to life in RIT/Rochester sooner and better.
RIT NEWMAN CATHOLIC COMMUNITY
We are the Newman Catholic Community at Rochester Institute of Technology. We are a growing and vibrant community that nourishes and integrates faith and learning, and together we share our gifts with all the world. While affirming the individual, the Newman Catholic Community seeks to empower the community to proclaim the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
Check our website out at https://www.ritnewman.com/
Deaf & Hard-of-Hearing Communities
Interpretted Religious Services
- Sundays at 10:00 am
- Fridays at 1:00 pm in Skalny Room
Deaf & Hard-of-Hearing Religious Communities
WOLK is a religious club that interlaces the Deaf and Hard of Hearing community with the Jewish community at RIT.
Hands of Fire
Hands of Fire is the ASL sister ministry of Cru at RIT and NTID. Hands of Fire is a place where Deaf and Hard of Hearing students can grow in community as well as grow closer to God.
Requesting Interpretation at Any Event on Campus
To request interpretation for any religous meeting/event please go to https://myaccess.rit.edu
Log in and click on "Add New SR" besides Special Requests, then fill out the information that best fits your accomodation.
Bhakti Yoga Club
Bhakti yoga club is a shared, spiritual space and community based on trust, respect, and compassion, exploring the principles that underlie yoga practice generally, and bhakti yoga. -- the yoga of loving service -- specifically. Students get in touch with their spiritual side, expand their horizons, re-discover their connections, and apply Gita wisdom to modern life. The higher taste of Bhakti powerfully inspires positive thinking and provides the strength to overcome negative habits, encouraging the spiritual growth of our future.
To learn more go to https://campusgroups.rit.edu/byc/about/
Chabad at RIT is a home where Judaism becomes alive, current and exciting. All Jews are welcome, no matter the affiliation, denomination or lifestyle. Our vision is to open our doors to Jews of all backgrounds and to infuse the next generation of leaders with Jewish pride, internalizing all they learn and experience in order to lead meaningful lives.
Inspired by the Lubavitcher Rebbe, Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson, of blessed memory. For a glimpse into the Rebbe, click on www.therebbe.org.
RIT Hillel is a Jewish community committed to creating a dynamic, pluralistic, diverse, and vibrant Jewish student life on the campus of Rochester Institute of Technology.
Hillel uses office and prayer space in the Schmitt Interfaith Center. Hillel also has a special programming, cooking and lounge space called Hillel House which is located in the basement of Residence Hall B. Hillel House is home to a student facilitated Kosher kitchen which provides Shabbat and holiday meals.
Hillel gathers weekly in the Jones Chapel each Friday night at 6:00 P.M. for Kabbalat Shabbat. Join us after services at 7:00 PM for kiddush or dinner in the Skalny Room. All RIT community members are welcome!
Susan SingerJewish Student Life Engagement Coordinator 585-305-0954 email@example.com
Hillel Student Leadership: HillelAtRIT@gmail.com
Wolk is a deaf Jewish club.
Muslim Student Association
The Muslim Student Association (MSA) at RIT plays a vital role in assisting Muslim students on campus with services that include weekly Jumu'ah Salah and on-campus events that bring Islamic awareness to Muslim students and Non-Muslims alike. Our purpose is to serve the Muslim community (students, faculty, and staff) on and off campus by promoting worship, service, and education.
Go to http://ritmsa.webs.com/ to find out more about RIT's MSA and it's events.
RITPagans is an open group for the RIT community to celebrate pagan holidays and full moon rituals. Ritual services are led by Rauncie Ryan, RIT Pagan Community Chaplain. Rauncie has been a Pagan High Priestess since 1998 and is active in the greater Rochester pagan community. Rauncie is also available for spiritual guidance and life passage rituals for the RIT community. In addition RITPagans holds educational meetings and social events throughout the year. All members of the RIT community are welcome to attend.
An ASL interpreter is provided for any rituals or gatherings when requested through the RIT Department of Access Services.
Check the RIT Spirituality and Religious Life calendar for upcoming RITPagan events.
Pagan Community Chaplain
Secular & Skeptical Communities
Starting Your Own Secular & Skeptical Club
RIT has no secular or skeptical recognized communities or student clubs at this time. RIT welcomes secular, skeptical, atheist, agnostic, humanist, and likeminded students and staff to campus. Support for your activities may be available. However, RIT generally tries to avoid duplication of clubs. You will need to demonstrate how your club has a distinct mission and different activities from existing student clubs. To explore this option, please contact the Assistant Director for Spirituality & Religious Life, Rev. Monica Sanford, at firstname.lastname@example.org