Thursday, 10 May 2012
I have seen and heard an incredible statistic a couple of times in recent weeks.
The fact that 73% of students professing to be Christians before they head to University don't get plugged into a church or any other Christian group once they get there.
That is pretty shocking, even if some of those who make up that statistic were merely religious church attendees rather than followers of Jesus.
Hearing the statistic has made me more thankful for the work of UCCF. Not because I work for them but because without their work with students in Christian Unions, I fear the statistic would be much higher.
This is because UCCF as an organisation is committed to the local church, working in partnership, across denominations, to reach the universities of this land with the good news of Jesus. They seek to plug students in to churches as this is their primary place of life-long discipleship. (To find out more go to www.uccf.org.uk)
It has also reminded me of the challenges we face to love Jesus and love people in an increasingly hostile environment. Having a big Christian presence on campus is in Freshers' week is key to finding, engaging with, and encouraging these young believers to keep running the race of faith during their time at university.
Praise God for keeping UCCF going over the last 80 odd years. By His grace they have remained firmly evangelical, committed to the task of living and speak for Jesus, and training students to do just that.
Pray that the Lord would stir people by His Spirit over the coming months to really make a stand for Christ in this academic year, get plugged into a local church and join others in reaching their campuses with the love of Jesus.
If you know of a Christian student heading to university, why not get them linked up?
*image courtesy of Canterbury CU
*statistic from CUE project research in 2011