The week of September 12th, 2022 Cairn hosted its biannual World Reach Week. This week’s theme, “Serving & Sharing in Global Crisis,” supplied the conversation in chapels, panel discussions, and at mission rep tables.
Keynote speakers Don and Esther Parsons brought their heart for Ukraine to their three chapel discussions. Their experiences as missionaries under SEND International, where they currently serve Ukrainian refugees in Poland, allowed them to share how God called and is using their love for others. Through the narrative of Jonah, the Parsons asked students to consider where their Great Commission might be. Unpacking the passage, the Parsons used Jonah as a way to reflect our hearts’ attitude for serving: Do we have a heart for the nations as God does, or, like Jonah, are we angry when God extends His love to people besides us? Jonah’s response, they added, also spoke to our expectations of how God provides, giving further insight into the state of our hearts.
The final chapel provided the privilege of meeting Pastor Alex, a Ukrainian pastor whose family was forced to flee from Kyiv as the war broke out. As Don translated, Pastor Alex’s gratitude for God’s protection, faithfulness, and provision through his and his family’s escape was evidence of His steadfast love for the Lord.
In addition to chapels, representatives from various ministries spoke to and encouraged students on how to use their career aspirations for serving others. Discussions included “Using Your Major in Global Missions,” “Your Profession on Mission,” and “Making Disciples in Times of Global Crisis.” These special seminars asked students to consider what it meant to have a calling, as well as how to be confident in offering their gifts for others, even in the midst of limiting crises. Throughout the week, students were also given a chance to appreciate other cultures through the World Feast, a performance by Mr. Dingeman Coumou, a Netherlands guitar and lute player, and a chance to learn about short-term mission trip opportunities.