Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Danielle's December Update

Campus ministry is honestly the most exciting thing I've ever been involved in. It's constantly changing and there is always something new to be thankful for. Even though our ministry experiences "seasons" where things get really crazy, or slow down significantly, there is never a shortage of things to rejoice in.

One thing in particular that I'm very excited about right now is Winter Camp. Winter Camp is an annual event in January where all of the FOCUS ministries (from all 8 campuses) come together to worship, fellowship, learn, and have fun. Our attendance is usually around 400-500 students. It's our biggest event of the year, without a doubt. In fact, many students in our ministry have expressed that Winter Camp had the biggest impact on their decision to "go all in" with FOCUS.
The bigger our ministry gets, the more costly it becomes for us to have an event like this. We have had to raise the price of camp to $150 per person this year. The neat thing about this though is that the students would tell you it's absolutely worth it. Some students save up for many months to attend, and others are generous enough to offer scholarship money for those that can't afford it. Collin College has been extremely generous to our students and staff over the years and consistently gives us thousands of dollars to allow our students to go to Winter Camp. They even provide buses for us to get there and back!
This year we were a little nervous about putting in our request for funds since the administration at Collin has changed a bit. However, we were blown away when the Student Activity Fee Advisory Committee informed us that we would be awarded $15,000 to send our students to camp! Praise God! Now our Collin students only have to pay $50 to go to camp and they don't have to worry about providing their own transportation. This is such a neat blessing, especially considering all the other FOCUS students will still have to pay the full price. We are so thankful for our relationship with Collin College and the fact that they support our ministry so much. This is quite different than what some campus ministries in other parts of the country are dealing with. God is so, so good to provide.

Collin College students and alumni at Winter Camp 2015
Next week are finals and the students at Collin will be wrapping up their semester, which is so hard to believe right now! It still feels to me that the semester has just started. I've been learning recently how much I need to cherish every moment that I get to be here, working with students and watching God change people's lives. It's the most rewarding work that I can think to be a part of. I sincerely want to thank every one of you that makes this possible. Your prayers and financial support are an incredible blessing, and just another way that I see God working through His people. Thank you for your generosity and for caring about college students!

This Thursday is our last large group fellowship of the semester, and this weekend we are having our Christmas Party for the students to celebrate together. I'm praying that the students have a safe and purposeful break, and that they will continue to spread Christ's love to their families and friends while they're away. Please be praying for this too!

Thanks for reading & Much Love!