Population: 2.7 million (2011)
Official language: English
Major religion: Christianity
IFES movement: Inter-Schools Christian Fellowship (ISCF) / University and Colleges Christian Fellowship (UCCF)
In Jamaica, while most persons are comfortable being called a Christian, they are not willing to conform to the teachings of Jesus Christ. The gospel is preached openly and boldly but many who receive the good news return to lives of sin. Pluralism is rife on campuses, and a belief in an absolute truth is diminishing.
ISCF / UCCF
- 31 tertiary and post-secondary institution in Jamaica, 26 UCCF groups
- 4 full-time ministry staff, 3 administrative staff, 1 official volunteer
- graduates are involved financially and as volunteers
- high school ministry groups in over 180 schools
- largest group at the Universities of the West Indies, Mona (200 students)
- smallest group is Edna Manley College (8 students)
Students are at the heart of the movement and they are passionate about sharing the gospel and prayer. However they are also challenged by demanding school schedules and financial constraints. There is also the need for more staff to assist in discipleship and training.
The movement has been blessed recently by seeing the revival of several groups that were dormant for some time. They placed greater emphasis on leadership development, evangelism and bible study and on three campuses God has drastically turned around the ministry – now they are among the strongest in the island.
View from the inside
Floyd Wilson is the UCCF (tertiary)staff worker. He writes, ‘In 1948, C Stacey Woods had to stop over in Jamaica on his way to Canada because of problems with the plane. This to me was a divine intervention; Mr Woods used the opportunity to investigate student ministry. He later sent a senior staff worker from Canada, Kathy Nicolls, who helped to establish the movement. Student ministry now impacts many for the glory of Christ – our society is filled with leaders who have been influenced positively by UCCF and ISCF.’
Luke 10:2 inspires Floyd: ‘The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore to send out workers into his harvest field.’
- for the students to embrace the IFES Living Stones vision, and to hold firm to scriptural engagement, community and prayer.