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Mike Polley

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2018 Missions Night

Every year, Bethlehem Baptist Church has a week and half event called Global Focus. Over the last few years, Campus Outreach has also hosted our own missions event in connection to Bethlehem’s focus on the world. At our Missions Night, students were able to hear more about God’s heart for the world. The two topics that were covered this year by our guest speaker were: ‘What is the Task Remaining?’, and ‘How have College Students Impacted World Missions?’. Students from all five of our campuses attended.

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As a ministry, one of our priorities is to expose all of the students we lead to the needs of the world and to help them understand that the Gospel is a global message. Because the needs of the world are so great, we as a ministry want to create and expose our students to opportunities to serve overseas. Currently we have 8 former students who are serving overseas. As God wills, we would love to send more to help the Gospel spread to all the people groups in the World. Not only do we have our own international ministries, but we have also partnered with a few organizations to give students many different ways to get overseas. One ministry focused on providing students with an opportunity so use their field of study while partnering with a long term missionary for two years. Another organization places english teachers all over the world which allows them to have access to harder to reach countries. Last, we as a ministry have two-year internships with all our international regions that allow our graduated to continue to do college ministry, but in an international context. We hope that by providing these three pathways, more students will see that God can use them to impact the world and that he uses ordinary people to do extraordinary things.

At the end of the night, we asked student to consider a next step to increase their awareness and their love for the world. The responses below were encouraging:

  • 29 Students committed to memorizing at least one Bible Verse from our Missions Notebook

  • 14 Students committed to completing the Missions Bible study we gave them

  • 24 Students said they want to join the support team of a current missionary

  • 5 said they wanted to help start a world prayer group on their campus

  • 14 students said they are interested in our Summer Cross Cultural Project (CCP) that went to Brazil last year for two months.

The next couple weeks our staff team will be individually following up with students to help them be faithful to their goals. We are currently finalizing our 2019 CCP location but we would love to be able to send a full team to Brazil again like last year!

Mike Polley
Campus Outreach Minneapolis
Mobilization Director

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Mobilization Event Update: Life After College Summit

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We have recently completed our first ever Life After College Summit for all of our junior and senior students. As the Mobilization Director for our region, I want to help equip our students as best I can for the world they will be entering into after college. One way to help accomplish this goal was through the creation of this summit. On February 17th, 25 of our students came and heard from several of our graduates from years past on several topics. Three different graduates came and shared about their experience in transitioning from college to the working world. One of them shared specifically about community after college, another shared about evangelism outside of college, and the third one shared about perspective on work and vocation verses being a student. We also were privileged to have Tom Lutz, who is an elder at Bethlehem Baptist Church and the CPO and Senior VP of US Bank, come and share with our students. He shared many of the scriptures and promises in the Bible that have helped him live out his faith at work and how to be a blessing to the company you work for.

One of the biggest takeaways for students was the realization of how involved God is in their vocation and much they can serve God and others through their work. God wants us to display His love and glory through our various gifts and abilities. For one of the graduate who shared it was being an engineer that works with water treatment systems, for another it was being a lawyer who was able to help display God’s justice and equality through doing his job well. Overall students were able to see their work and the way they carry themselves at work is really important. They were also able to see how much opportunity is there for them to add benefit to their employer and work excellently for God. Through these things they are living as God has called them and this will also help open doors to share about Jesus with others as their attitude and work ethic shines like a light at their company. Here are some takeaways from students that attended:

  • “I was really helped by the training on money and finances.”
  • “It was impactful to hear these graduates share in such an authentic way and hear about their experiences transitioning out of college.”
  • “It helped me start thinking about what is coming next and help me be aware of the many things I need to think through.”
  • “This event was not only practically helpful but spiritually refreshing and worshipful.”
  • Others mentioned it was refreshing and exciting to see how much their work matters to God and that they can serve God by doing what they love and serving him with their gifts.
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As a ministry, we love when students come on staff with us or decide to be missionaries overseas. These are amazing things and fruit of God being faithful to us. But he is also faithful to the other 85% of our students that graduate and seek to serve God as nurses, engineers, teacher and more. Their calling is different and not lesser. It was exciting to see how much students were helped by this event and it was personally worshipful for me to have some of our graduate come back and share with our students. To see these graduates established outside fo college and living out their faith is what we want, and hope that this event in some ways will help reproduce that result and help encourage our students to live for Jesus in all that they do.

Mike Polley
Campus Outreach Minneapolis
Mobilization Director

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How Does CO Build Laborers for the Lost World?

Campus Outreach's vision statement goes as follows “Glorifying God by Building Laborers on the Campus for the Lost World.” If you are familiar with our ministry, you probably understand how we seek to build laborers on the campus. So what do we mean by “for the lost world?” The college campus is filled with lost people from all over the world, so maybe that’s it? If that were the case, then we could say we are “building laborers on the campus for the campus”. However, our aim is to reach the world by changing the lives of students on campus during their college years. What kind of impact would our students have if their influence ended after four short years on campus? Jesus came to save the world and the world is where must go. Four years in college can have a profound impact if your goal reaches beyond the campus walls into the real world and the lost world. So how does Campus Outreach seek to do this? One way is through effectively mobilizing graduates.

All Campus Outreach Regions have a desire to mobilize graduates well. In many regions there is a staff person dedicated to this job, and a few regions even have a team of mobilization staff. Our goal as mobilization staff, is to launch students effectively into the three areas they might go: the campus, the city, and the world. A few students will come back to campus by joining our staff or another college ministry staff. Some will go to the world as vocational or non-vocational missionaries. Most will get a job in Minneapolis or St. Paul, and hopefully be launched with a vision to reach their neighbors and coworkers. Each of these are vitally important to reaching the lost world. As Christians, there is a universal call on our lives to be witnesses for Christ. Full-time staff and missionaries aren’t the greater portion, and working a ‘normal’ job certainly isn’t the lesser portion. ALL are called by God and gifted by God accordingly. ALL are called to do good in what we do and where we do it, and both of those things are different for each person and in fact needs to be. As a ministry we want to hold all callings equal and if anything talk more about the city knowing that is where most of our students end up.  

A few of our goals in mobilization are:

  1. Help students start to understand their unique gifting and what they enjoy doing

  2. Help them gain a vision for how they can serve and leverage their gifts for God’s Kingdom and the benefit of those around them

  3. Help connect them to others by getting them plugged into a good church and to others who have a similar vision

  4. Help them to be excited about life after college and see that God has much ahead for them

As staff, we often talk about the success of our ministry being measured 20 years from now. We desire to be equipping life-long laborers for the lost world, and not just have a large number of students attend our events. May the Lord help us to equip students to transition well out of college into the real world so that they may witness to and have great impact on the lost world! Would you pray with us towards that end?

Mike Polley
Campus Outreach Minneapolis
University of Minnesota Director

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Sand & Sun for U of M

Last week 5 of the U of M staff were able to go to South Carolina with 18 students for spring break! We were really excited for the opportunity to spend so much time with students we had met this year. We were hoping to have lots of freshman and sophomore students come on the trip and especially some who don’t know Christ. The Lord definitely provided on this trip for us.

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