Bluefield University students in the institution’s Missions Club spent their Spring Break ministering to college students in Madrid, Spain. From March 3 through March 11, they worked alongside International Mission Board (IMB) missionaries planting churches, praying for the community, and sharing testimonies and life experiences at social events.
The team of seven students included Erin Bowers, Audrianna Donham, Timothy Gasperson, Haley Lambert, Antowyne Shaw, Hannah Shockley, and Michael Vichiola. They were accompanied by Missions Club adviser and BU Christian Studies professor Dr. Henry Clary.
“The primary focus of our work was helping the IMB missionaries that were already in Spain, so we walked around the center area of Madrid and prayed over the church plants, the Metro system, and more importantly the people of Madrid, that they would experience Jesus,” Vichiola said.
“We shared our testimonies in church, handed out Bibles at the Metro station, hung flyers, surveyed university students, went on prayer walks, and talked with locals,” Bowers shared.
These students discipled young adults in the university district of metropolitan Madrid by visiting college campuses, engaging with English conversation clubs, and hosting social events. Evangelical Christians account for less than 1% of Europe’s population, according to the International Mission Board, so the students were encouraged to build relationships with the locals and demonstrate the love of Jesus to them.
Haley Lambert recalled handing out Bibles at a Metro station with Antowyne Shaw. A group of young men initially brushed them off but later returned and spoke to them through an IMB coordinator. They accepted the Bibles and read them as they walked through the station.
“They told us all week it’s all about connection,” Lambert said. “I thought that was such a beautiful representation of God, how He sees us, and how He desires to have a relationship with us like we made with those boys and those university students last week.”
A second team of students will travel to Quito, Ecuador, May 8-16, after the spring commencement ceremony. They will lead a Vacation Bible School and minister to caregivers at For His Children, a Christian children’s home. Since 1990, this group has provided care to children in at-risk situations, such as abandonment or neglect, in conjunction with local authorities and social services from all provinces in Ecuador. They also create pathways for adoption with loving families.
“Being in a different country where no one speaks English or being out of your comfort zone can be intimidating, but God uses us through that,” Shockley said. “He calls us to be missionaries, whether it is in a different country or at home. Missions is a way to make an impact in someone’s life. It’s a chance to make a difference and bring others into the Kingdom of God.”
Mission opportunities at Bluefield University are made possible due to the support of generous donors and team members covering all expenses. To make a gift in support of missions at Bluefield University, gifts can be made by visiting: https://www.justgiving.com/campaign/bumissions. For more information, please contact club adviser Dr. Henry Clary at [email protected].
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