Here I am, Send Me!
NEMS participants after the conference.
2024 is the year of Missions in FOCUS. It will entail various capacity building initiatives such as mission’s training, missions awareness campaigns culminating with the missions’ mobilization and training conference, Commission 2024 Conference.
The year started on a hight note with a major training on the 2nd to 4th of February which brought together 106 Missions and Evangelism Coordinators from nearly 100 Universities and Colleges across the country in the National Missions and Evangelism Summit (NEMS) at Kenyatta University. The purpose of the Summit was to foster faithfulness and commitment to service, raise a passion for student evangelism, expose trends and opportunities in local and global missions as we set up a core Commission 2024 conference mobilization team. The students had six plenary sessions as well as exposure to over 10 local mission organizations and mentorship by over 40 missionaries active in different stations across the world. Many students shared testimonies of their experience at NEMS.
… NEMS was an event to remark. To me it was a season of learning, unlearning, and relearning. I was greatly challenged, and I pray that what I learned won’t remain on paper but shall be evident in my generation.
Missions Coordinator, Kisii University.
… I went bank fully equipped for the task. I’m grateful.
Mission Coordinator, MCCU UoN.
… It was such an amazing moment, of getting to deeply understand the ultimate desire of God me be part of what He is doing Globally.
Missions Coordinator, Murang’a University of Technology Christian Union
… I and my team have really benefitted and now we have seen Mission and Evangelism in another scope, and we look forward to implementing what we have learnt.
Missions Coordinator, African International University
As we embark on different aspects of Missions this year, please join us in prayer. Pray for the success of Commission Conference planning and the activities that culminate to it. pray for the students’ missions that happen in different parts of the country. Pray for vibrance in student evangelism in all campuses today.
The past two months were saturated with STEM events. The 2022-23 Cohort completed their term on the 29th of July 2023. Before then, we had a weeklong transition induction meeting for the outgoing STEM staff to prepare them for the next phase of their lives. We celebrated their faithful service during the STEM Convocation which saw over 800 participants join the event. This year’s Convocation was graced by the STEM Alumni who met that morning to celebrate God’s faithfulness through the STEM Program for the past 31 years. During the alumni breakfast meeting, we launched the STEM alumni engagement framework that will see the STEM alumni involved more in the ministry.
The First Year Student's Experience
Every student in universities and colleges has only one chance of being a first-year student. Most of the graduates can recall the first year of their campus or college life. The experiences of first years differ based on many factors such as their prior level of exposure, social economic status, and the level of support from the continuing students among other factors.
Nevertheless, all first-year students will exhibit a certain level of common characteristics. First, they are vulnerable. For some of them, it would be their first time to be separated from their parents while for others, it would be their first to experience unmatched freedom. Secondly, they experience a significant level of pressure because their loyalty is being sought after by many suitors. This pressure alone is enough to cause unnecessary anxiety and tension among them.
Harassed and Helpless
By all the standards, first years fit the category that Jesus described as “harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd”. While many would like to exploit the harassment and the helplessness of the first years, the Christian community respond in a similar manner as that of Christ when he saw the crowds. He had compassion for them. He exclaimed, “The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field.” Matthew 9:36-38.
Why you should be interested
Every believer in the campus community should be interested in the well-being of the first-year student. There is no better concern than giving the first-year student an opportunity to know Christ. Naturally, the first-year students are open to the gospel, they are eager to learn and experience new things and at the same time, they are crucial for the growth of Christianity in the institution and later on become the future transformation agents for church and society.
It is for these reasons that FOCUS Kenya runs Every Fresher for Jesus Campaign, at the beginning of every new academic year. The campaign seeks to mobilize all Christian students to share the gospel with all first-year students in their first 30 days on campus. Our primary goal for evangelism is to give every student an opportunity to hear and respond to the gospel. More than hearing the gospel, we want them to believe, love and follow Jesus.
The campaign is anchored on God’s command to make disciples of all nations. It is inspired by Jesus’ compassion for the harassed and the helpless. We want them to know that Christ reigns at the University and the world over. We make use of the open window of their availability when they have a little or no academic load in their first few days on campus.
We all can do something
The campaign will require the participation of every believer. The Christian student on campus, the faculty, and Associates. First-years are many, and they need many more Christians to share the gospel with them. To reach all the first years with the gospel, we need at least all the students attending a CU Sunday service to share the gospel with 2 first years. We need all born-again students to share the gospel with at least two other students through a range of evangelism strategies that will be friendly to even those sharing the faith for the first time.
We invite the Christian professionals to join us in prayer for the next 3 months, trusting God for the salvation of first years. You can join the Christian Union close to you and ask the student leaders how you can support them. You can offer financial support to the CU to facilitate the necessary resources. Pray with us, ‘may Your will be done in Campus, as it is in Heaven’.
I’m Susan Muiruri, an ICT diploma graduate of Nyandarua National Polytechnic and outgoing STEM Staff for the Nairobi CBD CUs. Coming to STEM was not among the things that I dreamt of after college but God in His master plan had this figured out for me.
Before coming to STEM I was not very consistent with my personal devotion but STEM has challenged me in a huge way. Even with a lot of demands for my attention, I have been able to gain consistency in my quiet time. Studying and reflecting on the word of God has drawn me closer to him and helped me grow in my hermeneutics; which in turn has impacted my sermons and teachings to students.
Serving students has increased my desire for more knowledge. Students often came to me expecting that I knew every answer to their questions. One of my highlights was hosting half of a CU in the STEM house for lunch. We bonded better with each other and I got more opportunities for one-on-one mentorships thereafter.
I entered with high expectations and enthusiasm to serve, especially after SOT. Reporting in the CUs was a primary focus for me. However, I was discouraged when I was once asked to leave during an executives’ meeting. My team leader and I prayed for strength and grace and attempted several other times to connect with the institution. Eventually, God blessed our efforts and allowed me a fruitful time in service there. The same team is quite devastated by the end of my STEM year.
Engaging in training, planning, and execution has polished my communication, public speaking, and training skills. Through STEM, I have identified my strengths and areas for improvement. I have also become a better team player. These skills and qualities will be invaluable as I enter the marketplace and contribute to society. Moreover, this journey has confirmed my conviction to serve God and I am now highly confident that ministry is where I belong.
I am extremely grateful to my family, friends, associates, partners and students who made my 11-month journey a success. I’m also indebted to the ministry of FOCUS because of the trajectory that my life has taken through the opportunity.
God bless FOCUS Kenya in its endeavor to reach students to change nations.