New curriculum for Strongholds

Lust-Free Living is no more. The student-led support group for men and women of all classes — centered around Christ healing relationships broken by sexual sin, shame and addiction — is now called Strongholds. LFL has long been viewed as a group for certain people with select problems. However, the group ministers to many other manifestations of sexual shame or sin — from body image to difficult childhood experiences. Open to students of any sexual orientation, the ministry helps a variety of people with a variety of struggles.

Senior Ben Bergstrom is this year’s Strongholds leader. He said that the vision for Strongholds is still the same as it has always been: “to bring the hope of the Gospel into situations that can often feel hopeless.” Bergstrom said, “This year is a trailblazing year for Strongholds, not because we are doing something new, but because we are working to define what we’ve been doing and put a structure in place that will help keep our ministry going on into the future.”  Strongholds possesses the same values and goals that LFL had, but will include a new curriculum, which is currently being used by Strongholds books on campus. 

The Strongholds small group curriculum was written by Drew Boa for his master’s degree final creative project for his graduate courses.  Boa graduated in 2014 with his undergrad and in 2015 with his graduate degree from Wheaton College.

The name was chosen unanimously by leaders Drew Boa, Katie Robinson and Ben Bergstrom.  Boa said, “Over Christmas break last year I asked Katie and Ben to pray with me over the name. We had a few options, but after much prayer, all three of us had strong convictions that Strongholds should be the name.”

Unlike Discipleship Small Groups (DSG), Strongholds is not affiliated with Wheaton College. Last year, student leaders looked at the option of becoming a part of the college and decided that, at that time, it was best to remain an independent organization. 

Bergstrom said, “I have been talking to Ray Chang, the coordinator for DSG, about Strongholds. Ray and our leadership team are committed to doing whatever will best show the student body the freedom and healing power of Jesus Christ. As our ministry moves forward, that may look like becoming a part of the Chaplain’s office.” However, at the moment there are no formal plans.

Students who would like more information about Strongholds or would like to get plugged into a group can contact Bergstrom at Ben.bergstrom@my.wheaton.edu or junior Rebekah LaRusso at Rebekah.larusso@my.wheaton.edu.

Leave a Reply