The semester has come to a close and with it one of the most exciting seasons in our ministry cycle - the Cross-Cultural Project, or Just CCP. Each year we partner with teams from Campus Outreach regions in the US to labor with us in Brazil. These students come ready to share their worldviews, beliefs, and lives with Brazilian students as a tool for God to draw Brazilians to Himself. For 8 weeks we live in “CCP world”, which among many things consists of God providing opportunities for in-depth conversations, transformation in students, and new relationships on campus. CCP is a time of year from which we emerge very tired, but with many reasons to praise God.
This year we received two teams: one from CO Birmingham with 14 people, and another from CO Atlanta with 5 people. The Birmingham team focused on the students of Physical Education, specifically focused on connecting with 1st through 3rd semester students. The Lord gave us favor in allowing us to meet a lot of new students. We were also excited about several 3rd semester students showing a lot of interest in investigating Jesus. The Atlanta team’s focus was on a new area of investigation on campus that includes majors such as Math and Engineering. We have been amazed at how much favor we have received by these students, only to see it increased during the CCP. God has drawn in a group of students from the new area who regularly attend our events. Praise God for all He is doing on both sides of campus! The CCP was also very involved with GringoEnglish, our English initiative, doing things such as leading free English clubs on campus in order to meet new students and participating in classes and socials.
Because of the more skeptical and non-religious culture that exists on the UFMG campus, much of our evangelistic strategy revolves around events that allow us to gain insight to the unique worldview of each student. Also, we use this platform to introduce Christian perspectives about God, the world, and the person of Jesus. This semester, we used the theme “What moves you?” to encourage conversations about satisfaction and purpose. Through our main event, Café com Prosa, and two weekend trips, we dove into these ideas via discussion groups and personal conversations. On the first trip we challenged the students to consider the historical person of Jesus in their search for God. By the end of that trip we had many students expressing the desire to investigate more about who Jesus is and how or if he could connect them to God and to everything they are searching for. On our last trip, close to the end of the semester, we actually began the process of looking into who Jesus is, his character, his miracles, and the resurrection. By the grace of God we left that trip with several students seeing the value of asking those controversial questions and investigating more about Jesus.
After such an exciting semester filled with God’s grace and so many new faces, we will go into next semester with a plan to deepen our relationships with new contacts, create studies for the students who expressed the desire to investigate more about Jesus, walk alongside those who are already investigating, and continue to establish believers in discipleship. Please pray that we would be able to rest well and abide in Christ during our short break in between semesters, and that God would continue working in us and these students next semester. Thank you so much for your investment in Brazil.