Rick Warren Highlights Community Night at Urbana


An estimated 1,600 St. Louis area residents joined 22,000 Urbana 06 attendees for a Saturday night Community Service that included music by a choir representing many St. Louis area churches. Volunteers from more than 100 St. Louis area churches have worked with InterVarsity staff to help prepare for and present the Urbana 06 Student Missions Convention.

InterVarsity has had an active ministry with college students in St. Louis for many years. Two local volunteers, Pastor Andrew Stern of New City Fellowship Church and Washington University student Ashley Smith, told the attendees that more than 1,000 college students have come to St. Louis over the past ten years to help rebuild blighted neighborhoods through partnerships developed between churches and local ministries, including InterVarsity’s City Lights ministry. “Our community and our city have been changed,” Stern said.

The evening’s service featured a message from Rick Warren, pastor of Saddleback Community Church in Lake Forest, California, which included comments from his wife Kay; and a message from Lisa Espineli Chinn, director of InterVarsity’s International Student Ministry.

Rick Warren challenged students to live a life of significance. “Significance comes from knowing your purpose, knowing your calling, knowing what God made you to be,” he said, offering attendees specific steps to help them discover their calling. But in order to be fully dedicated to Christ, he told them, “you are going to have to become familiar with three very important words, whatever, wherever, whenever.”

“Our God is not a God to be downloaded in your ipods for your private and personal consumption and enjoyment,” said Lisa Espineli Chinn, as she echoed Warren’s call for attendees to demonstrate a lifestyle that reflects their commitment to Christ. At the end of the evening, attendees were invited to renew that commitment.

The Urbana 06 Student Missions Convention is sponsored by InterVarsity Christian Fellowship USA and Inter-Varsity Christian Fellowship of Canada. It is being held in the Edward Jones Dome and the America’s Center in St. Louis, MO.

For more information contact Gordon Govier at 608-443-3688.