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Student ministry in Kanto, Japan

Kirisuto-gakusei-kai (KGK) is part of the International Fellowship of Evangelical Students. KGK started in 1947 at Waseda University. The university held classes on Sundays, so several Christian students began to worship on campus during lunch break with a Christian professor. After these students heard about student ministry in America they were inspired to pray not only for their own campus but for all the universities in Japan. Today KGK fellowship has Bible studies and prayer meetings in many campuses in different areas of Japan.

The vision of KGK is: Living the gospel in the place where we are sent. It is based on having a missional attitude. The three core values of KGK are:
1. Evangelism—knowing the richness of the gospel.
2. Interdenominational—building up the church of Christ.
3. Student-centered—witness with your whole life for your whole life.

KGK staff work in four ways:

1. Supporting each KGK fellowship on their campus(es). Students have Bible studies or prayer meetings and staff aim to visit each group once a month. Individual care is very important, especially for the students who are committed to KGK.

2. Staff give sermons or workshop messages at prayer meetings, camps and fellowships, and train students to share the gospel or messages at camps.

3. Staff advise student committees. As an adviser, we usually give students the whole-year structure and some guidance to help them to think about their theme and goal, we attend meetings to give encouragement and help guide them.

4. KGK Kanto staff have orientation, prayer meetingm and staff meeting once a month. The turnover of KGK Kanto staff is quite rapid, so monthly orientation is important. As part-time staff in Kanto, I take care of five campus fellowships. I also look after the fellowship for Kanto students who are going to graduate in 2024. I am also one of the mentor staff who takes care of young female workers.

Since spring 2020 KGK Kanto activities have been online because of COVID. Students have been very creative and flexible in facing many changes. There have been some benefits of online gatherings: reduced travel time and ease of access for students who live far away, online camps help students to easily link what they learn in camp to their daily life, and lower cost helped students to participate more easily. However, there are downsides too: lack of diversity in the way of interacting and the connections between first and second year students to each other and to senior students are weak. It is quite challenging for some students and their motivation to attend decreased and they gradually moved away from the KGK community.

Please pray for:
• Enough energy to support students, wisdom and language to encourage students to grow in their faith and share the gospel.
• Healthy life-style and that I will commit more time to pray for students.
• The fellowships and committees I support that they will experience God more deeply, grow in faith and love to share the gospel with their friends relying on God’s wisdom.

By Kelly, an OMF missionary

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