Record Number of Students Participate in Missions WeekNov. 29, 1995
WACO, Texas - A record number of students and faculty participated during Baylor University's Baptist Student Ministries (BSM) Mission Emphasis Week recently held on campus.
Thirty-four missionaries from 18 countries and four states spoke in 73 Baylor classes to more than 2,000 students according to BSM missions intern Ann Farley.
The visiting missionaries and the Baylor faculty ended the week with mutual respect and appreciation for each other, Farley said.
"The response from the Baylor professors was that the missionaries' material was helpful to their class," she said. "The missionaries were impressed with the fact the professors cared and wanted their students to be presented with the opportunity of missions." Recruiting students for long and short-terms missions was part of the weeks activities, and debunking commons myths about missionaries.
"Missions Emphsis Week helped people understand that missionaries are real people," Farley said. "Missions is more than a place you go. It is an act of obedience." Farley, a Baylor graduate and former missionary to Hawaii, said that as a student she had fears of being sent to a dark jungle in Africa, but came to understand that a missionary's life is not something people need to dred.
"We need to be willing to go anywhere, but understand that God is not out to curse you. He has your best interest in mind."
Previously serving as BSM director at the University of Hawaii at Hilo, Farley has just returned to Baylor this year as said she was encouraged to see the evangelistic aspect of the missions week.
"Some of the professors told the missionaries to share the gospel if the got the chance to do so," Farley said. During the four-day event, Farley said the missionaries reported numerous opportunities to talk one on one with students about their faith in God. The visiting missionaries told Farley that God was challenging some of the Baylor students and left their names with the BSM to pray for and follow up on the students.
Baptists representatives to Yemen Drew and Martha Whitson spoke with several Muslim students while on the campus. They said several Arabic students approached them at a missions fair held during the week in which they had a booth represented with Arabic symbols. Martha said they were able to help correct these students views about Western religion.
"Muslim students think Christianity is a western cultural thing," she said. "We were able to tell them it is a personal relationship." The furloughing employees of a Baptist-supported hospital in Yemen said they were encouraged by the environment of faith they saw at Baylor.
"The Christian students at Baylor are really strong in the beliefs," Whitson said. "We were impressed with their spiritual maturity. The professors as well as the students were interested in our lives overseas."
Missions Emphasis Week is an annually held event on the Baylor campus.
For more information, contact Farley or Clif Mouser, director of the BSM, at Baylor at (817) 755-3215.