In Sierra Leone, student union elections are often violent. Last year, students of SLEFES, the IFES movement there, launched a successful non-violence campaign in the run-up to the elections at their university.
Elsewhere, SLEFES students have been speaking out against the widespread exam malpractice, encouraging fellow students to study and score grades they deserve. SLEFES students on another campus initiated a project to provide offline library resources for students on campus, since internet connectivity was a challenge.
What do all these stories have in common?
They are all examples of students thinking bigger – or ‘engaging the university’.
Matthew has been working with SLEFES for nine years. He had always thought that campus ministry was just about evangelism with students. But through the IFES Engaging the University (ETU) course he came to see the bigger scope of university ministry: everyone on campus needs the gospel: students, lecturers, faculty and staff. And it is the Christian’s role to bring a biblical perspective into every conversation, every discipline, every program.
“The ETU course served as an eye opener into how Christian students can be involved in the on-going conversations in their universities. Now I am helping SLEFES students to creatively and biblically engage in discussions happening on their campuses.”
- Give thanks for the ETU course and for the way it helped Matthew better equip SLEFES students to live faithfully as Jesus’ disciples in every aspect of university life.
- Pray that through these SLEFES initiatives, students, lecturers, faculty and staff – as well as campus life in general – would be transformed by the gospel.
- Pray that the new Engaging the University e-learning course starting in March would be helpful for many involved in IFES student ministry around the world.