International Friendship Club
Co-working with us at Victoria University is Daniel Luey (from the Chinese Anglican Church), who continues to support the International Friendship Club. As a Club, we continued to meet over the Summer and our weekly meetings on Thursday afternoons have resumed. The students have enjoyed building friendships and connecting with each other over food, games, discussion and student presentations on different countries and cultures, with both domestic and international students attending.
Clockwise from top left: IFC Stand at Victoria University’s Orientation Week; Saturday day-out at the Botanical Garden; Student presentations
This year we moved location from Victoria University’s Rutherford House at Pipitea Campus to Ramsey House at the Kelburn Campus. Ramsay House has been a great centre for our work and the partnership we have with the Anglican Church is invaluable.
Almost 20 years ago, Rey Enriquez, our staff worker and Rev David Newton, the Anglican Chaplain pioneered and developed News-watch. We continue to use News-watch to aid international students in their understanding of New Zealand language and culture, through using TV News bulletins, sharing food together, having fun and community engagement activities.
News-watch stand at Victoria University’s Welcome Festival
Friday Bible Studies
The Friday night fellowship consist of students and alumni/working adults who are/were mainly from Victoria University. A few people from Massey University and Wellington Institute of Technology also join us.
The sharing of meals and spiritual food together, along with spin-off activities such as, home visits, outings and one-to-one personal time, contribute greatly to the growth in discipleship and in following Jesus. Each Friday evening, we begin with conversations over dinner before games and Bible study discussion. As student numbers have fluctuated over the year, we changed from having allocated groups to a presentation-then-discussion type of Bible study. This semester we have been studying the book of Psalms together to help build up young Christians in their faith and help seeking international students come to faith.
Friday Bible Study dinner and discussions
Through one-on-one mentoring, Bible studies, working together on job applications and interviews, and sharing about work experiences etc, we have walked alongside some of our alumni as they have transitioned from students into the workplace. God has drawn them closer to Him through these challenges and they have learnt to be more dependent on God and His providence. God has been faithful to these students/alumni and they have successfully secured jobs after long periods of job searching.
Food, fellowship and friendship are the hallmarks of our Wellington ISM activities. For the students and graduates involved, this wrap around care assists them in their journeys to faith and on into discipleship.
Alumnus and Associate Staff Worker Wellington, ISMNZ
Acting ISMNZ staff leader for Wellington
Consultant and Massey Postgraduate Ministry, ISMNZ
Last weekend (5 - 7 July) we had an excellent regional camp for International students from the Manawatu and Wellington regions at Foxton Beach. Thank you for being part of the success of this camp through your prayers. Three phrases come to mind to describe the camp: low budget, family feel, and fruitful. Our theme was “Religion or Relationship? What does it mean to follow Jesus? There can be a tendency in our world to equate big budget with big success, yet I don’t see Jesus operating that way. Jesus was low budget, and he emphasised us being family together and fruitfulness as signs of the Kingdom. There were times at the camp when I was thinking, “this is old school, this is new school, this is Jesus school.” So what did that look like for us?