We mentioned to you earlier this week about some of the challenges that Chi Alpha workers in Eurasia face.
Some of that is because of the way their university culture differs from ours.
In the United States, student organizations are ubiquitous on university campuses. There are clubs and rallies, and sororities and fraternities. In my freshman year at a secular university in the US, both a Christian campus club and an underground newspaper were started by student activists. But this is not so common in Eurasia.
In Moldova, for example, our Chi Alpha workers have discovered that there are absolutely no student organizations in any of the nineteen universities in the capital city of Chisinau. So when John and Adriana Lungu approached the universities about starting a Chi Alpha group on campus, the universities didn’t understand at first. And when they did understand, they denied the Lungus the privilege of meeting on campus.
But despite this obstacle, the Lungus persevered in the work they are doing among university students in Chisinau. Instead of meeting on campus, they’ve opened a student resource center as place where students can gather between classes and after school for interest groups, to use the computer, to play games, or just hang out.
Through these activities, the Lungus and their Chi Alpha leaders are working to build individual relationships with the students who visit the resource center, in hopes that their relationships will open doors for sharing the gospel with these students who don’t know the hope we can find in knowing and following Jesus.
Right now, (maybe even as you’re reading this post), students are enrolling in the universities for the 2017-2018 school year (in Moldova, you have to go through the college admissions process in person, and can only do so during the month of August. This provides opportunities for the Moldova Chi Alpha team to be on the campuses, handing out water bottles, and getting the word out about the student resource center.
They have great plans for this coming school year – they’re even hoping to have enough students involved to be able to start a Bible study in the spring. But to be able to reach as many students as possible, they need our help.
First of all, could you be praying with us for the Lungus and the work they’re doing in Moldova? Would you pray that God would expand their team? Since they share the gospel in mostly one-on-one settings, they need more Christian students in Moldova to join their efforts in spreading the gospel among the university students.
Would you also be praying for funds to come in for them to finish furnishing their student center? One of the biggest needs they’ve recently discovered is that during midterms and finals, a lot of the poorer students have to choose between paying for photocopies of their study materials and buying food, and so they often go hungry to be able to continue their education. The Lungus are hoping to be able to provide a copier to the students during this time, so they can still afford to eat, but they need support. (If you want to give to what the Lungus are doing you can do that securely here.)
Finally, would you be praying for the Chi Alpha team to have favor with the universities in Chisinau? One of the best ways for them to build relationships with university students is when Chi Alpha teams come from the United States and they’re able to orchestrate an intercultural meeting at one of the schools, but allowing these is at each university’s discretion. Please be praying that God will fling wide the door that will allow them to be on campus and reach out to these students who need God’s love.
Thanks for praying with us for this important work in Eurasia Northwest. We are so glad you’re a part of this community. We couldn’t do this without you.