Every Christmas Southern’s Student Missions team sends gift boxes to student missionaries who are serving internationally and are unable to be home for the holidays. This year members of the Collegedale, Tenn., Church joined in the fun.
Each care package is tailored specially for an individual missionary, with gifts and notes from friends as well as snacks, clothes, and toiletries. Those teaching overseas also receive decorations and teaching materials from the School of Education and Psychology.
“The fact that there were people on this campus who cared about me enough to ensure I received a little token of appreciation was amazing,” said Jared Powrie, senior computer science major, who served as a student missionary in Indonesia in 2015. “The notes that were included in the package were especially meaningful, and I still have them to this day.”
This semester 70 student missionaries are serving in approximately 20 countries around the world, including Peru, India, Poland, and the Marshall Islands. After the Student Missions team packed and labeled all 70 boxes, they brought them to the Collegedale Church on Sabbath morning, where willing individuals could pick up a box to ship to the intended recipient.
“We were overwhelmed by the response,” said Samantha Yoon, senior nursing major who works in Student Missions. “By the time the second church service began, half of the packages had already been claimed.”
“We had more people willing to participate than we had packages,” said Christian Bunch, Student Missions director. “We’ll definitely be doing this again!”
Southern Adventist University | January 2019