Each spring toward the end of the school year, The Legatus Christi certificate is presented to students from RC chapters whom we recognize as having outstanding capabilities in demonstrating apologetic and evangelistic conversations, both in helping to equip other believers and in sharing their faith with nonbelievers. Legatus Christi represents being an ambassador for Christ. Candidates must meet 15 criteria that can be encapsulated in four values:

1. Academic rigor. Someone who has pursued God with their mind.
2. Demonstrated, Christ-like character (integrity).
3. Enthusiastic evangelism. Engages others with compassion and respect.
4. Willing to teach others which leads to exponential impact.

In advance of all the new interviews you'll be seeing with this year's recipients, We're checking in with a couple of our previous notable Legatus Christi students to see what they're up to now.

Grant Willey received the Legatus Christi recipient in 2014. He was one of the first students to help form the Ratio Christi chapter at his college, the University of Alabama in Huntsville (UAH). Not only did he actively participate in RC, but he was co-director of the chapter. In his original interview after being recognized with the Legatus Christi certificate, Willey was adamant about what he wanted readers to know.

“Focus on Christ and allow the Holy Spirit to renew [their minds]. Don't be discouraged by people who resist hearing apologetic and evangelistic ideas, and don't worry if you cannot come up with the right words to say to respond to an argument. God is the one in charge of changing hearts."

Here's what Grant is doing now:

“Since receiving the recognition, I've still been assisting with leadership of the UA Huntsville RC chapter, except for a brief hiatus over Fall 2016. I've finally graduated from Athens State University with a Bachelor's in Management of Information Systems, and am working in IT support on Redstone Arsenal here in Alabama. Last October I married the love of my life, Julie Willey, who comes to Ratio Christ with me and gives insight! She is a nurse practitioner at a local clinic, and we share a passion for seeking growth and discipleship in Christ and sharing with others to build them up.

Q: Have you thought of seeking further formal theological training?

A: Though I don't believe I will be seeking formal theological training at seminary myself, I intend to keep reading, studying and learning. Then I can share what I learn and try to stay abreast of the questions students are asking, as well as seeking out those who have sought formal theological training and making use of them. Most recently I've been reading about the Holy Spirit as well as getting a better understanding of denominations, how they differ and what each has to offer. My intention is to know what resources there are and make them readily available to students as well as work with our chapter in hosting events and speakers to reach out to our campus.”

In 2015, Caitlin Montgomery became the recipient of Legatus Christi. Two years earlier, she played a key role in starting an RC chapter at the University of Virginia (UVA). Her interest in apologetics not only led her to initiate the chapter, but encouraged her to engage in conversations with people with different worldviews. She would even go to atheist and agnostic clubs on campus to engage people.

In her Legatus Christi interview, Caitlin emphasized that young Christians need “to listen well… become friends with many kinds of people, and really listen to them.” She believes strongly that students need to read (to prepare for conversations), and should "not be afraid to bring conflicting beliefs into the conversation” by reading books addressing non-Christian topics as well as those that help to strengthen one’s faith.

Caitlin represented Ratio Christi’s body of students well when she spoke at our October 2015 Symposium on how RC’s training helped her become a more well-rounded Christian. We checked in with Caitlin to see where her passion and love for learning has taken her! Here is what she had to say:

“Since graduating from the University of Virginia with degrees in Religious Studies and Speech-Language Pathology, I have gone on to pursue a Masters of Divinity from Columbia Theological Seminary in Atlanta, Georgia. Right now, I'm beginning my second semester of this three-year program! I've been able to take Greek and love reading the Bible in its original languages. In the meantime, I work part-time both as an Editorial Assistant at the Society of Biblical Literature and as an SAT/ACT Prep Tutor.

This semester I will be interning at a local non-profit, Refugee Women's Network, an organization that helps connect people to services after they have resettled into the United States. After seminary I hope to either do non-profit work, pursue PhD work in Biblical studies or theology, or work as a hospital chaplain. We'll see!”

Q: Is your interest in apologetics continuing?

A: I am definitely still learning about apologetics from some of my seminary professors and through personal reading!

See a Slideshow of Grant and Caitlin photos below...then and now!