Linny’s spiritual life was complicated.
She grew up as a nominal Buddhist with some vague Christian influences. When she went to university, she began deep, friendly, yet pointed conversations with Christian students, which led to her to question the purpose of her life. The more she learned, the more curious she became about Jesus. In time, she joined Perkantas, started attending church, and her search transformed into a deep love for Jesus. As she puts it:
Somehow, I found my meaning of life in Jesus. The more I learn, I believe He is the one who found me and not the other way around.
Thanks to the bold and loving witness of students in her life, Linny found good news this year. And while 2020 has been full of hard headlines—a pandemic, economic devastation, protests, disputed elections, wars, hurricanes, fires, and much more—we rejoice that IFES has had good news to share with you this year.
We have seen God at work in Breaking New Ground, with new student groups beginning even in the pandemic. We have witnessed student ministries worldwide innovating to carry forward their mission in a dizzying array of restrictions.
We are thankful for the steadfast support of donors who have continued to give sacrificially, providing the resources we need to support these innovative initiatives. And we are especially grateful to God for the provision our new General Secretary, Tim Adams.
Most importantly, we rejoice in God’s good news for us in Christ. The Gospel is good news for us, as we navigate trials that we could scarcely have imagined before this year. It is good news for the students of the world who need to hear it and grow deeper in it.
Will you give today to bring good news to students in 2021?
With your help, IFES can help more students understand God’s good news for them. Your new gift to IFES will mean more students are built into communities of disciples, transformed by the gospel and impacting the university, the church and society for the glory of Christ.
Here are some examples of how your money can make a difference:
$10 per month could help pioneering student ministry in places like Niger, by funding regular training seminars for student leaders.
$25 per month could help four staff support Christian students in leading evangelistic Bible studies.
$50 per month could pay for a place for a student at a regional training event.
STUDENT MINISTRY IN 2021
IFES works to release the creativity and initiative of student ministry across the world. To meet our vision of growth and depth of impact, we focus on these priorities: evangelism, leadership development, strengthening and supporting our national movements, and pioneering ministry in new campuses and countries.
In 2021, we will facilitate the work of our national movements and meet the needs of their specific contexts through these ministry priorities. Below you’ll find just a few examples of what that will look like.
Launching Online Ministries
As IFES ministries have shifted their activities to digital platforms, we have begun to explore the strategic opportunities this provides. It is critical to be where the students already are, and students are increasingly engaged with the online world.
- South Asia: a series of webinars led and presented by students will help them grow in using online tools for ministry while exploring their faith.
- Francophone Africa: the new “Village 2.0” project will apply the traditional values of community found in African villages to online ministry in the region.
In the village, information flows freely and quickly. Stories are easy to tell. Support and generosity are the hallmarks of community.KLAINGAR NGARIAL, FRANCOPHONE AFRICA REGIONAL SECRETARY
Christianity in Context: Engaging the University and Majority Religions
To have a meaningful impact on our world, students and staff must know how to engage with it lovingly and how to share the truth of the gospel in ways that will resonate with their peers.
- Latin America: newly developed books and resources will encourage students to engage the university and help build a network of Christian academics and faculty.
- Middle East and North Africa (MENA): students will learn how to reach their Muslim classmates by considering questions about Christians as they relate to Islam.
- South Asia: building on the success of MENA programs, staff and students will learn to form deeper connections with those of the region’s major religions: Buddhism, Hinduism, and Islam.
The heart of IFES is our students, as their passion and creativity are the most effective ways to reach the university. Regional student conferences are a critical way to help encourage and energize them to live their lives on mission.
- Europe: the second Revive conference will nurture the growing passion among students across Europe to prayerfully seek revival for the continent.
- Caribbean and South Pacific: regional conferences provide critical opportunities for training, worship, and community for students from isolated contexts.