Mark moves on
After seven years at the helm, Mark Pickering has just handed over the tiller as head of the Student Department. Like Jacob's work for Laban, the time has flown by, but Mark has worked tirelessly not to win a Rachel (as he has Rachael already), but to join Peter and Andrew in winning men for Christ (Matthew 4:19). Mark's focus has been developing key leaders across Britain, sharing the wealth of CMF resources, and modelling faithfulness even in the smallest detail. We wish him well as with Rachael and Zoe he takes on new challenges in York. Already they have agreed to become Regional Secretary (Mark) and Medical School Secretary (Rachael), which just goes to show that the faithful servant never quite retires (John 6:67-9).
Alex Bunn is Acting Head and Laurence Crutchlow Acting Associate Head of Student Ministries from 1 March, and we hope to recruit a new Head soon. Please pray that God would raise up the right person, in time for the next academic year.
National students' conference
This remains the highpoint of the student year. In February we welcomed 411 people (possibly the most we've ever had) to the theme Living in the light of tomorrow. Steve Brady tackled Revelation superbly, reminding us not to treat God Almighty as 'God all matey', that we are all going to die on time, and that ultimately, we can be sure that Christ is faithful, so believers win.
The international students' preconference was attended by some 20 from Armenia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Belgium, Czech Republic, Georgia, Hungary, Israel, Jordan, Latvia, Lithuania, Serbia and South Africa. The training and encouragement they received will be taken back home to accelerate the tremendous growth of Christian medical movements in those countries. Well done to our intern, Will Taylor, for all his hard work over the months running up to this.
This continues to be the best CMF publication, so the students say! After a gruelling spell of campaigning on ethical issues, it has been a relief to turn our eyes to other needs such as homelessness, creation care and global poverty.
Student member joins Chairman on TV
Cardiff medic Tom Roberts appeared on BBC1 The Big Questions on 1 March, and stoutly defended the idea that parents should teach moral values regarding sex outside marriage, if they have their children's best interests at heart. CMF chairman Trevor Stammers also featured in the same clip which you can watch at CCFON.
The flagship evangelism training course, Confident Christianity, continued to equip a new generation of students in Cambridge and Bristol to 'give the reason for the hope' we have in Christ (1 Peter 3:15). Its sister course Answering Other Faiths was pioneered by students living on today's multicultural campuses, and challenged 35 Cardiff students to affirm the truth in other worldviews, build bridges, challenge falsehood, and share Christ. Both courses have been applauded by UCCF for blessing medics and non-medics alike.
Student leaders' conference This has proved its worth to a host of doctors who cut their teeth as student reps, and runs on 20-22 March in the Peak District. Peter Saunders will speak on 2 Timothy, 'I give you this charge', complementing a range of practical seminars.
Electives day Our annual student electives day takes place at Johnson House, London, on 29 April. It's great to meet so many students who see electives as a taster for serving the Two Thirds World longer term.
Alex Bunn is Acting Head of Student Ministries.