The Kick-Off BBQ is over and you're just starting to get into the swing of being back on campus. You're incredibly impressed with yourself for approaching all of those strangers and actually talking to them at the BBQ! What's even better is that you got some of their contact information. On top of that, some of them want to join your Bible study! Can it get any better than this!? You are crushing fall outreach.
So you graduated college.
Or you finished your time as a FOCUS missionary.
Or you just have a heart for evangelizing beyond the college campus.
Whatever reason you’re here, the question is now what?
As FOCUS missionaries, we evangelize to college students by inspiring and equipping them to evangelize the world. But what happens after college?
I enthusiastically agreed to document Fall Outreach at UC Berkeley and then I realized that I had no idea how Fall Outreach worked here. It’s a second year campus, two returning missionaries, three new missionaries and a new chaplain and pastor!
Nestled in between the city of Danbury or glorified suburb (as some of us like to call it) of The City, New York City that is, is Western Connecticut State University. From the outside it may look like your typical New England University with gorgeous buildings built from 1903 to the present, lush trees filling up space in the quad, students curled up in every corner, and long lines at the bookstore. This is no ordinary campus though.
Down south on the bayou lies the campus I serve, the University of Louisiana in Lafayette. If Louisiana makes you think of swamps, Duck Dynasty and gator hunting, you are not to far off. There is a swamp on campus, complete with alligators! I unfortunately have yet to meet any of the Robertson family.
So… It’s August… In Omaha, Nebraska… #TheGoodLife. There are a couple of things that you can count on. It’ll be blazing hot and humid. The roads (specifically Dodge Street) will be under seemingly endless repairs and the population will increase about 16,000 and last, but certainly not least, the FOCUS team serving at UNO will be arriving on campus. Like our compatriots across the nations, we begin the most intense time of the year—Fall Outreach!
Can you think of a time in your past when your life got significantly better?
I remember mine well: it was a hot August day, and I stood outside the freshmen dorms during the first week of classes at the University of Nebraska. I felt nervous, excited, and ready to run away all at once. It was my sophomore year, and I was about to invite total strangers to join my Bible study that didn’t exist yet.
Despite over a year and a half after his election, the praise for Pope Francis continues from people of all sorts of backgrounds. The media, the public, and the members of the Catholic Church continue to hang on to his words and his actions.
Pope Francis has the amazing knack for preaching while embodying this preaching with his own life. He is not simply a great marketer for the Church; he is a model of evangelization for us that we can learn a lot from.
It's August. Back-to-school time.
It’s been said the first few weeks on campus are the most decisive weeks of a student’s college career. The friends a student makes at the beginning of the year can have a lifelong impact on his or her values, perspectives, and decisions.
As missionaries and evangelists, we have an amazing opportunity to meet and connect with college students during this significant window of time. In this post, you’ll find a list of 50 Fall Outreach ideas, many of them submitted by veteran FOCUS Team Directors.
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Since the pontificates of Pope Paul VI and John Paul II, the Roman Catholic Church has been commissioned to engage and embrace the world with God's message of love once more with ‘new methods, new ardor and new expression.’ It has come to be phrased, 'the new evangelization.'
For FOCUS, this means meeting college students across the nation where they are and challenging them to examine the meaning and purpose of their lives. Through personal relationships and friendship, we offer college students the true peace and fulfillment they seek in the good news of Jesus Christ and the teachings of the Catholic faith, inviting them to answer His calling in their lives.
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