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December update

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Today, December 3rd, is our annual Keep FOCUS Growing fundraiser! We do it every year on giving Tuesday, because Facebook uses that day to waive all transactions fees for online donations. We are trying to raise money for staff salary shortfalls, outreach budgets, supplies, administrators and much more. Some generous donors have agreed to match up to a total of $36,000 in donations to the FOCUS ministry today only. If that's something you'd like to participate in, please go to our Facebook page and donate. Also, if you're reading this before 1:30, I'll be going live on Facebook at that time to tell you more about it! 

In other news, the Collin ministry is still going amazingly and I'm loving it. I wanted to give you a specific few highlights from this month. I would also like to formally apologize because I am terrible at remembering to take pictures of people. 
1. I'm finishing a Focus on Jesus study with my sweet and incredibly faithful friend Lauren. I'm…

November Update

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Ministry is great and I have so much to be thankful for, but honestly, it's also pretty rough sometimes and this month, I have a lot of prayer requests. I want to tell you about what God's been teaching me, a few great blessings, and then share some more difficult things.

First, something God's been teaching me about - suffering for the sake of Christ
This is an ongoing discussion we've been having as a staff team. My biggest question was, what if my life is just going great? Does that mean I'm not following God well? I've been praying about it and earlier this month I feel like God answered me. There were several days back to back when I felt particularly burdened by other people's struggles. And I realized that that is part of suffering for Christ. We should put ourselves in situations where we risk getting hurt sometimes if we're doing it to love other people. And I don't say that to preach at you. It was a pretty shocking realization to me, beca…

October Update

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Guys, Collin is great. I get to work with some amazing people and these students are lovely and my core girls are magic. Also the weather is finally cooler, so basically all is right in the world. This month, I wanted to tell you about fall camp and also introduce you to a few girls I'm studying with.

Fall camp happened a few weekends ago. This is a 24 hour event where the students come together to worship, listen to talks, hang out, play games, have small group discussion, and basically just build relationships with each other for the couple days we're there. This year, two of our core girls, Lauren and Hailey came.
Hailey, me, Vanessa, and Lauren
We ended up essentially combining forces with Shannon and Claire (two student leaders that I get to help mentor this year) because they had a small group too. I think the girls really got to bond with each other, we had some neat conversations about the importance of community and I am looking forward to seeing these relationships k…

September Update

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Hi all! It's been a busy month! School started two weeks ago, and we've concentrated our efforts on just being on campus, being as visible as possible and meeting as many new students as possible. I got to meet a ton of new girls and invited them all to our small groups or our large group meetings. This is what our welcome week looked like.

Meeting people during welcome week

Volleyball at the campus apartments on Wednesday
Welcome week event schedule. We gave these flyers out to as many students as we could.
On Thursday, we kicked off our large group meetings and tons of new people came! The room was packed, and I was able to spend the evening with four different girls, all of whom attended a small group the next week.

Thursday night Fellowship meeting
The last couple of things we kicked off were core (or small groups) and peer team (a small group leader meeting.)
Our core was on Wednesday night. I get to lead with Vanessa, who is one of the sweetest humans on the planet and i…

August Update

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Hi all! We're wrapping up summer projects and getting ready for school to start in a couple weeks. If you haven't gotten an update from me before, I probably added you during the summer at some point when we were talking about fundraising. But I just wanted to let you all know what's going on.

One of the big events during the summer was SICM (Student Institute of Campus Ministry), our student leadership training conference in Washington state. We had two different teams go this year, one in May and one in June. I went with the Collin College, Richland College and SMU students in June. It was a pretty neat experience.

The students spent most days listening to and participating in talks on all sorts of subjects, from how to be a spiritual friend, to how to lead a small group, to personal relationships with God, to a Bible study on the book of Philemon. Then in the middle of the week, they got to go out to the college campuses up in Seattle and surrounding areas, walk up to p…

June Update!

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We're officially done with the apprenticeship! It's pretty crazy, but I'm super excited to see what God does with us all next year.

We did something new this year. While half of our staff was at May SICM (Student Institute of Campus Ministry - the week long conference in Washington state), we hosted a Bible boot camp. Here, the students spent an entire week, 9-6 from Monday til Friday, reading and discussing the Old Testament. It was so neat! There were about 11 UTD students who showed up consistently throughout the week, and at the end of it, we had a lunch together and celebrated our new Biblical literacy. We hope to actually do another one in July with the New Testament, so I would love prayer that students continue to show up and that God blesses it!

Our Bible Boot Camp fam
On May 30th and 31st, to wrap up the apprenticeship, all of the apprentices this year gave sermons about our biggest takeaways. It was a pretty neat way to see how God had moved in and changed all o…

May Update

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Hi all! I really can't believe we're almost at the end of the school year. I'm pretty sure this semester started last week, so it's weird that it's almost over. Also I would like to apologize for my lack of pictures in general. I take literally zero photos ever, so y'all are pretty lucky to get two this month. 😉

One of our biggest events this month was the Rez Fair, an event hosted by all the Christian ministries in the middle of campus to celebrate Jesus' Resurrection. We did it the week before Easter, and invited each ministry to set up their own booth. Various students participated in live bands and sang worship music. Some groups did posters with spiritual questions. One did Henna art with gospel stories. Some students drew messages in chalk. We played games and had snacks. My favorite part was that, welcome people into the event, we had a big wooden cross and on it, we invited people to write things that they didn't want to carry alone. It was a r…