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To Our Praying Friends,

We have much to give thanks to God for this month.

Just last week we hosted apologist Alycia Woods from Ravi Zacharias International Ministry. Alycia is a winsome speaker who has addressed mixed believing and unbelieving audiences at MIT, Harvard, Brown, Boston University and, now, Cornell. She addressed the question, "Is Christianity Intolerant?" to a room of about 75 students, and made a clear statement of the Christian principle of expressing the truths of Christianity with love and respect even to those we have deep and fundamental disagreements with. She gave clear expression of the beauty of the Gospel. Her 40-minute talk was closed with 15-minutes of Q&A. Friendly, but serious, questions were raised by the audience, like: "How do Christians explain their checkered and, at times, intolerant past?" "What are some practical, effective ways we can 'break the ice' to speak with our atheist and agnostic friends about the truths of Christianity?" About a dozen people stayed after the event to dialogue further with Alycia. Please pray that the unbelievers who came would continue to grapple with the truths of the gospel in community with us. Cornell is a fiercely secular place which means your prayers are especially needful to break through these hard spots and skeptical hearts.

Our female athletes Bible Course, led by Ministry Fellow Carrie Jussely, now has 21 women meeting to study the book of Romans. We started the year with 8. God has given the growth, and we are very thankful for your prayers to that end. This group is comprised of new believers, others who up to this point have had little to no exposure to Christianity, and some who have been walking with the Lord for some time. Would you pray that each person would grapple seriously with the grace of God in Christ in their own unique situation? Would you also pray in particular for a freshman who just this year committed herself to Christ?

Eighteen other Bible Courses meet on campus throughout the week, ministering to about 150 students week in and week out, covering biblical norms for sexuality (freshmen), Romans (sophomores and juniors), and vocation (seniors). What an amazing opportunity for each student to be exposed to the living Christ through the pages of Scripture. Please pray that joy would mark their obedience, their minds would be renewed according to God's holy standards, and their love, faith, and hope would be sustained by our faithful Lord.

As an act of kindness, our students distributed free hot chocolate and coffee this past Monday to their fellow students in the busy Willard Straight student center. Ten gallons of hot drinks poured into our free logoed mugs were handed out to curious and grateful students. "What student group are you with? Why are you doing this?", many of the dozens of students who stopped by asked. They seemed genuinely interested when we told them we were a Christian group on campus and that we'd love to have them join us at one of our meetings. Please pray that these tokens of kindness would resonate well with the largely unbelieving student body here at Cornell. Our contact info and large group meeting details are printed on the free mugs, so also pray that many would be prompted to reach out to us or attend one of our meetings. We will be doing this event both in Willard and across the quad in the bustling lobby of Mann library a few more times before the end of the school year.

Our Seniors continue to study the biblical doctrine of vocation as they prepare to embark in just three short months on life-after-Cornell. Nearly each one has expressed wonder about an aspect of post-graduation life. "How do I invest in friendships knowing I will be working in my new city for only a short time?" "How can I gain financial independence when I am not even sure about my long-term career plans?" "I am worried that I may not be able to 'cut it' in the cutthroat working world." As some of our seniors continue to interview with graduate programs and potential future employers in order to solidify their post-graduation plans, would you pray that above all else they would develop hearts that wholly trust the Lord for their future? Many of them already do, but they could also use some grace in that area.

God has been good and kind to us here this past month. We are grateful for you and for your prayers.

Yours in Christ,

Geoff Sackett
Ministry Fellow
Christian Union at Cornell 

Please note: if you would like to receive regular updates on how to pray for Christian Union's work at Cornell, please email prayer@christianunion.org.