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Hello CU Caritas Cornerstone Partners and friends of the ministry,

I rejoiced in the Lord greatly that now at length you have revived your concern for me. You were indeed concerned for me, but you had no opportunity. Not that I am speaking of being in need, for I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content. I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need. I can do all things through him who strengthens me. Yet it was kind of you to share my trouble.
—Philippians 4:10-14

Stanford students are comfortably in the cadence of summer, and of course I’d love to ask you to pray yet again for these cherished image bearers of God. May the Lamb of God rule in and through them, more and more, for his glory and for the joy of His people! But I want to focus this prayer letter on two non-students who are near and dear to our ministry. Firstly, Abigail Carreon, who only a few weeks ago finished her nearly three-year stint of ministering to Stanford students in Christian Union, gave birth to healthy and beautiful Claire Marie on June 25th! Praise God! And please pray for continued grace as Abi and her husband, David, navigate the newness of taking care of this precious child now outside of the womb. It will surely be intense, challenging, and wonderful—and your prayers will make a difference!

And secondly, Garrett Brown, beloved director of our ministry to Stanford students from 2016 to 2020, has been battling cancer for almost three years now. Doctors initially found the cancer in one of Garrett’s kidneys. After a surgeon removed the kidney, the cancer was discovered in some of the remaining nearby lymph nodes. Chemotherapy and two years of immunotherapy kept the cancer in check for a time, but more recently it has traveled to lymph nodes along Garrett’s spine and into his sternum. And most recently, Garrett has had enough difficulty swallowing due to the pressure on his esophagus to require two different endoscopies to dilate his esophagus. Please ask the Lord that the tumors near Garrett’s esophagus would shrink to relieve this pressure, that the Lord would heal Garrett entirely from this cancer, and that Garrett, Susan, their kids, and their extended family would experience more deeply the love of Christ that is truly better than anything this world has to offer.

In the language of Paul’s letter to the Philippians, I’m hoping that you treasured supporters will “revive your concern” for Garrett and his family and “share their trouble.” Your prayers ascend to the Lord of Hosts, and He will not let them go unheeded!

The circumstances of these two dear friends fit squarely within the “all things” that Christ can strengthen us to face. May He grant that strength! And our students, too—in their varied circumstances—will find themselves “brought low” and “abounding” this summer. May we all within the Christian Union Caritas community learn the secret of contentment in Christ and be able to “do all things through him who strengthens [us].”

Grateful for your partnership in the gospel.

Justin Woyak
Senior Ministry Fellow
Christian Union Caritas

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