This Pilgrim’s Progress…
As we gathered last week as a staff team and spent time in this passage, I was left with several questions to ponder. Among them, what does good shepherding of non-believers look like? And what TRULY motivates me as I work with students–is it a crown of glory from the Chief Shepherd, or something else? These are hard but good questions to be asking as we enter a new year that is in many ways more uncertain than the previous, despite the availability of vaccines and the presumption of security that would bring.
Creating new space for Christian Internationals to gather and grow
One of our main goals from the time we started this ministry to International Students has been to raise up student to be Christian leaders who are transformed by the good news of Christ and part of God’s transformation of others and the world. So it seems that each year we pray bold prayers that the Lord would lead us to meet students who are already believers when they come to Canada, such that we can build a vibrant Christian community that can reach out to others with the love of Christ. My soon-to-be housemate Tina is one such young woman, we have just met another who we hope will join our community as well, and we are excited about who else God will bring across our path! Pray for our first gathering aimed at Christian students, to be held Friday September 17th, that we could encourage, build up and challenge students in their lives and walks with Christ.
Calgary Workplace Ministry Group continues
The Workplace Ministry Group which started in January, hosted by alumni and volunteer staff Mindy Lau, continued meeting through June. There was a stable core group of 5 or so, the format varying from interactive teaching times, guest spotlights and personal application and discussion times. Soon enough it will re-launch, hopefully with some new recent grads added to the group. Please pray that God would use this group to help our alumni navigate some of the isolation and stress of their transition to the workplace, and that they would continue to grow in learning to live out their faith wherever the Lord has placed them. I so enjoy my support role as I meet with Mindy regularly to encourage the work that she is doing.
Students are back on campus
. . .want to help us reach them?
Every year we do our best to reach out to Christian and non-students alike to welcome them into our community. This year we have extra challenges, with no “Clubs Expo” during Orientation at the University of Calgary, and therefore very few obvious ways for us to meet new students. But do have special events planned throughout this month that we will be using to help invite students in, which of course involve FUN and FOOD. So this year as staff we’re inviting our friends to partner with these New Student Outreach events in prayer and especially through our kickstarter campaign. Click below to find out more, we’re already more than $2100 toward our $5000 goal for campuses across Alberta!!!
A financial update on my ministry finances
Thank you so much to those of you who have continued to give financially over these many years of ministry! I am so blessed by all who pray and by those who give. InterVarsity has recently worked on alligning our salaries with other similar ministries, which means it is time for me to look for new partners in this work!! To meet my monthly budget, I need an additional $2335/month over the next year.
If you already give regularly, thank you so much for your ongoing generosity. If you don’t, would you prayerfully consider partnering with me in this work with students? Please feel free to reach out to me to talk more about this. Or of course, you can also just go ahead and give a one-time or a monthly gift online by following the link below, being sure that SARA LEGGETT is in the “designation” space. Gifts can also be made by cheque or pre-authorized donation and all gifts over $20 are tax-deductible through InterVarsity Christian Fellowship.
A glimpse of the vision behind International Student Ministry
This short video was made by one of our friends and partners, and the young woman who speaks at the end is one of our Christian students, Tina. Next week she will become my housemate, and we are so excited for her desire to be part of our InterVarsity community and to serve as a student leader with our International Friendship Group. Laura, who she talks about, is my staff partner here in Calgary.
Asking especially for:
To find a good rhythm for regular gathering of Christian international students
Wisdom as we navigate changing COVID protocols
Creative ways to engage non-believers in deeper conversations; plans for seekers’ bible studies
Workplace ministry group re-start this autumn Olds College group, as we seek to draw new students into community and leadership roles; vision and diligence as we try to reach out to and serve other students on campus
Giving thanks for:
A new faculty advisor for Olds College club, alongside other excellent volunteers
Excellent, trusted partnership with my staff colleagues in Calgary
A new high school ministry coleague Josephine and student leader Tina, both who are housemates this year
A great time of fun and learning as I co-directed a 4 day Discovery session at Alberta Pioneer camp (ages 6-9)
the privilege of greater leadership and involvement at my church, St. James
SUMMER ACTIVITIES. . .
10 students joined us for a night or more of camping (over a period of 4 days) at a family campground near to Calgary, trying out sleeping on mats in tents, carrying water, cooking over propane stove and the campfire, etc. We taught them some new games too, including Dutch Blitz!
Discovery Camp, ages 6-9. Campfire, and colleague Rachel sporting her sheep’s ear craft for our “Lost and Found” theme day. Co-directing a camp for this age was quite a learning curve for me and for my co-director and student, Sophia!
Just a few other snapshots of my life.
Rawson Lake, The incredible view after a crazy hike with a post-doc student up to Rawson Ridge (Overlooking Upper and Lower Kananaskis Lakes), Sami sleeping in the tent while camping, Sami and friend Carmen try to share a hammock, tiny, tennis-ball sized melon from my container garden, called a Russian 123 melon!