Just as Ben Coulter discovered a connection to the nations through students and professors on campus at SAU in Magnolia, other universities all over the state welcome new international students every year. Thanks to the support of Dixie Jackson, there is already an avenue in place for Arkansas Baptists to be a part of ministry to these students.
That avenue is Baptist Collegiate Ministry or BCM. On the campus of Arkansas State University in Jonesboro, for example, God has spurred students involved in the BCM to actively minister to their fellow students from around the world.
KINLEY LARMOYEUX, BCM’S STUDENT VICE PRESIDENT over international ministry, exemplifies this ministry by coordinating a monthly dinner, weekly Bible studies, and more. These events connect her fellow Christian students to the many internationals who are hungering for friendship and community in this strange new country far from home.
But the ministry doesn’t all rest on the shoulders of the students. Tyler Hoffpauir, ASU’s campus minister, knows that partnership with local churches provides the key to successful BCM work.
Aaron Flake, college pastor at Word Baptist Church in Jonesboro agrees. He sees this connection as the perfect opportunity for the local church to reach the world. By giving to Dixie Jackson, Word Church joins together with churches around the state to fund collegiate ministry at our many universities.
THE RESPONSIBILITY OF ARKANSAS BAPTISTS doesn’t end with funding, though. It’s important for church members like you and me to actively engage, using the BCM as an avenue to build relationships with international students.
This doesn’t require elaborate activity. Simply visiting while sharing a meal, offering a ride, or providing a place to stay during the holidays can make an eternal impact on the life of an international student.
This partnership not only maximizes funding, it also maximizes efforts as the churches and collegiate ministries work together to share the Gospel.
COLLEGIATE MINISTRY IS A VERY TANGIBLE REFLECTION OF THE URGENCY before us. College students are only on campus for a short time. An international student’s stay may be even briefer. Night may fall for them very soon if they return to their home countries without knowing the truth of the Gospel.
But we can impact them while it is still light. There is still time! Night is coming, though, so we must act now, spreading the love of Christ to these students and reaching the world through them.