By Kate Yoder

Linking Italy to Greek

I wasn’t the typical InterVarsity student. Or staff worker. My first chapter meeting was in Florence, Italy, in a drafty upstairs room of a cloistered medieval church, studying the Bible with Italians and student artists from South Africa, Sweden, and Canada. I entered the world of InterVarsity as a Link staffworker in Italy. And now that I’m stateside, I can’t seem to get enough of InterVarsity.

After two and a half years as Link staff in Italy, I now teach eighth grade English in Indianapolis and continue to work with InterVarsity as a volunteer for Greek Ministries. Serving as an InterVarsity volunteer is a tremendous encouragement to me.

This past Greek Conference I was a small group leader in the World Changers track. As we studied the Bible together, I remembered how much I love discussing the Scriptures with college students. And it was a great gift to be able to share my experiences as Link staff in Italy and to talk with students who God may be leading to serve on campuses overseas. At the Alumni Reception I learned how the Greek InterVarsity chapter got started at my alma mater, DePauw University, and found out how I can volunteer on my old campus.

Though I am no longer an InterVarsity employee, my staff friends in Greek Ministries always make me feel very much a part of the InterVarsity family. Late one night one of these friends listened to me talk about mourning the loss of my team and my relationships with students in Italy, and about the sorrow and loneliness I’ve faced this past year, adjusting to a new job and a new place. As he shared the story of his own journey in ministry with me, he helped me to identify gifts and passions for shepherding students that God will use whether in teaching or in ministry.

Most returning missionaries experience depression, guilt, and disconnectedness for some time as they reenter life in the US. So it’s a huge comfort to have an organization that keeps me connected and allows me to continue to share my gifts and experiences with students and staff as a volunteer.

Currently about 35 former Link staff are employed by InterVarsity/USA. Find more information on Link ministry here. Find more information about InterVarsity’s ministry to Greek students in fraternities and sororities here.