Reflections on Campus Ministry from Nigeria

Tom Lin, president, InterVarsity Christian Fellowship/USA
January 31, 2017

A few weeks ago, I was with InterVarsity’s sister movement in Nigeria, at their student missions conference, which is similar to our Urbana Student Missions Conference. Nigerian staff and students worshiped loudly, passionately, hopefully, at a conference center guarded by security forces with automatic machine guns. A terrorist attack was possible at any moment.

In the midst of persecution by Boko Haram, where 1.5 million have already been forced from their homes and are without food in the Muslim North, thousands of students accepted the call to intentionally move to the North because, as they shared with me: “We won’t give in to fear. The gospel is worth sacrificing our lives.”

Saying Oui to God

Jessica Fick
June 12, 2015

Though we often think in linear ways about our lives or career paths, our God is eternal, and his ways are not our ways. Thankfully Jesus has more for us than our own small dreams and plans.

InterVarsity Link staff member Nia Marsh has been learning this lesson through her transition from a career as a costumer and wardrobe supervisor working in theater to ministry with students through the Groupes Bibliques Universitaires(GBU) in Paris, France.

As a student at North Texas University, Nia studied fashion and costume design. After college she secured a job in Boston creating costumes for theater and opera productions. “I loved getting to see world-class performances in the dress rehearsals after we had worked to create costumes,” she said. “Some of my favorites were Madame Butterfly and The Magic Flute.”

A Tribute to Sir Fred Catherwood

Gordon Govier
December 4, 2014

InterVarsity Christian Fellowship/USA is mourning the loss of Sir Fred Catherwood, a longtime leader and volunteer with the International Fellowship of Evangelical Students (IFES). InterVarsity is a founding member of IFES, which now has movements in 155 countries. Sir Fred Catherwood died November 30, 2014. He was 89.

“The loss of Sir Fred is a family loss—certainly for IFES and InterVarsity/USA— but also for Christian clergy and laypeople around the globe,” said InterVarsity president Alec Hill. “He was a devoted follower of Jesus, a passionate teacher of the Scriptures, and a servant leader among statesmen and Christians, exemplified by his service as vice president of the European parliament and his long-term commitment to IFES.” 

Reflections on Two Amazing Lives

Alec Hill, President of InterVarsity Christian Fellowship/USA
May 15, 2014

In the space of six days last month, I spoke at two memorial services: one east (Philadelphia) and the other west (Chico). On the surface, the gatherings had little in common — different families with distinct narratives. But for me, the two services intertwined in significant ways.

Yvonne Woods
Yvonne Woods
An extraordinary woman, Yvonne lived robustly for 98 years. Widow of InterVarsity’s founder, Stacey Woods, I first met her seven years ago. The sharpness of her mind, the graciousness of her demeanor, and the regal bearing of her countenance were striking. She co-labored with Stacey in serving Inter-Varsity of Canada (1934-41), founding and leading InterVarsity/USA (1941-60), and then leading the International Fellowship of Evangelical Students (1960-72).


Celebrating Yvonne Woods (1915-2014)

April 9, 2014

Yvonne Woods, the widow of InterVarsity/USA pioneer Stacey Woods, passed away Monday, April 7, 2014. She was 98 years old.

“If you ever met Yvonne, you were touched by her humility, sense of mission, and class,” said InterVarsity president Alec Hill. “Along with her husband, she leaves an incredible legacy of impacting student lives.”

Stacey Woods led both the U.S. and Canadian InterVarsity movements, and then was the first General Secretary of the International Fellowship of Evangelical Students (IFES). For a time he held all three positions simultaneously. Yvonne was his steady companion. In C. Stacey Woods and the Evangelical Rediscovery of the University, Donald MacLeod writes: “Yvonne…provided the domestic security his restless spirit needed. She was a woman of intelligence, charm, energy, and endless faith and confidence in God’s purposes.”

Praying for Peace in Ukraine

Gordon Govier
January 27, 2014

The images from street demonstrations in Ukraine are striking, particularly the images of Orthodox priests carrying crosses and standing between the demonstrators and police. One image in particular caught the attention of Bob Grahmann, now Director of InterVarsity’s Link program, and formerly a resident of Kiev, Ukraine for nine years.

The photo shows ministry colleague Denis Gorenkov, in an orange jacket and holding a Bible, standing with Orthodox priests and several women on a street strewn with rocks which had been flung at police by demonstrators. Gorenkov is general secretary of CCX, InterVarsity’s sister student movement in Ukraine through the International Fellowship of Evangelical Students (IFES).

Rejoicing in God's Work in Mongolia

Alec Hill, President of InterVarsity Christian Fellowship/USA
September 13, 2013


Every year, InterVarsity sends thousands of students on urban and global projects. And, every  summer, I try to visit one. In July, seven trustees, two spouses and a trustee’s adult son joined Mary and me for eight days in Mongolia. We were also joined by Tom Lin, InterVarsity's Vice President for Missions, and his wife Nancy. It was truly an amazing experience.

Our host was the Fellowship of Christian Students (FCS of Mongolia, a sister member in the International Fellowship of Evangelical Students (IFES). Planted in the late 1990s by Korean IFES staff, FCS grew quickly after the Lins joined the team in 2001 as a part of InterVarsity's Link program. The photo above shows Mongolian, Korean, and American Link staff - past and present.

Studying Abroad and Growing in Faith

Lauren Dueck
August 15, 2013

The last place I expected to find myself was in a gay club in Cape Town.

My friends had been pestering me to go clubbing with them since we’d arrived in South Africa eight weeks before. I’d always said a polite “no, thanks!” and gone off to play solitaire in my room. But I finally caved, and found myself on a sparsely populated dance floor, watching guys make out around the room. To say I was uncomfortable would be an understatement.

To rewind – I grew up homeschooled, so I don’t think I knew what a club was until I got to college. I’d quickly joined InterVarsity, which kept me away from the party scene, and, unfortunately, let me lose touch with most of my non-Christian friends.

InterVarsity Alumni – Andreas Rothfuss

Gordon Govier
December 13, 2011

As Chancellor of the University of Tubingen, Andreas Rothfuss leads one of the top research universities in Germany. Becoming Chancellor is not the career that he planned when he came to Portland State University (PSU) in 1992 to work on a Master’s Degree in Business Administration.

Andreas came to Portland to prepare for a career in business. And he was also looking for a community of Christian believers. Andreas had been a leader in a group at the University of Mannheim that was a part of SMD, the German affiliate of the International Fellowship of Evangelical Students (IFES).

World Student Day

Gordon Govier
October 19, 2011

One day to change the world and it’s a 48 hour day. The International Fellowship of Evangelical Students (IFES) is observing World Student Day on Friday, October 21, 2011. It’s a day when everyone who cares about student ministry and its ability to shape the leaders of tomorrow can join in a global prayer meeting to pray in unity for students and the ministries that reach out to them.

Twice as Long

World Student Day starts when October 21st begins at midnight for students in Tonga, in the first time zone beyond the international dateline. This day of prayer and student unity will end 48 hours later at midnight for students in Samoa, the last time zone before the international dateline.

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