Chi Alpha Campus Ministries exists to reconcile students to Christ: transforming the university, the marketplace, and the world. When our staff look at a campus, they see the potential of turning undergraduate and graduate, American and international students (and faculty) into Christ-centered and Christ-honoring laborers.
One emphasis we have tackled for decades is the recognition of what the Lord has done in bringing so many international students to America. Here are a few reasons we believe reaching these special visitors is a strategic way to fulfill Christ’s Great Commission.
1 International ministry is a Biblical principle, or world missions in reverse.
2 Christian internationals return home as missionaries.
3 God has given us a way to reach people in countries closed to the Gospel.
4 International students are tomorrow’s world leaders.
5 God brought a very large number of internationals here so many Christians can touch their lives with kindness and hospitality.
Part of Chi Alpha’s general strategy is to determine how to serve the international students on each campus where we have a Chi Alpha chapter. We have many staff that work full and part time in this area of ministry, and I want to introduce and recognize one of the best I have observed.
Karen Keyser has been with Chi Alpha the past eighteen years, after starting out as a high school teacher. She served for many years at the University of Louisiana-Lafayette, and for the past ten years or so at Georgetown University in Washington D.C. Karen recently got married and announced she is moving back to the land of her youth. She will join the Chi Alpha staff team at the University of Oregon and continue her vital work.
Karen has been a fruitful and faithful member of the Georgetown (GU) Chi Alpha team, the DC Metro Chi Alpha team, been the catalyst for Northeast regional development, as well as a vital contributor in national ministry development. In missionary street lingo, this lady can bring it, has done it, and is one of the best missionaries we have.
Listen to what Brooke Collins (one of her teammates at Georgetown) told me: “Karen is the kind of person I think of when I think of what it means to be a minister. She is one who spends herself for the sake of the Gospel. For years, she would give up her Friday nights to lead Bible studies for international students. In the process, she introduced many of them to Jesus for the first time. She would open her home to them for Christmas parties, nights away from campus, and home-cooked meals. She loved them like a mother loves her children. She went out of her way to make them feel at home when they were thousands of miles away from the only family and home they had known. Karen has been a gift to Georgetown and the number of students she has mentored over the years. Oregon has no idea what a beacon of the Kingdom is headed their way.”
Serve globally. Will you follow Karen’s example and invest in the life of an international student near you? Perhaps they will become a modern day Cornelius (Acts 10) or Lydia (Acts 16), fully committed to building the church of Jesus in their home country.
Love is a verb,
©2015 by Mike Olejarz