God’s Call to Campus Ministry

Campus minister Steve Kooy says God spoke to him in a powerful way in October 2013 through the words of Matthew 9:35-37:

“Jesus went through all the towns and villages, teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the good news of the kingdom and healing every disease and sickness. When he saw the crowds, he had compassion on them, because they were harassehttp://geneva.queensu.ca/d and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few.”

“I remember praying, ‘Yes, God! There is so much work to be done—what are we going to do about it?’” said Kooy, campus minister at Geneva Fellowship at Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario.

Geneva Fellowship is one of more than 30 campus ministries supported by Christian Reformed Home Missions.
At the time that Bible verse spoke to him, Kooy said, the ministry was going incredibly well.

Many students were growing in faith and participating in groups called “huddles,” discipleship, and worship.

“I felt so excited about what God was doing, but also stretched,” said Kooy.

Taking into consideration Queen’s University’s 17,000 undergraduate students and 4,500 graduate students, it’s not hard to see why.

Going on to the next verse, Matthew 9:38, Kooy was troubled. That verse says, “Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field.”

Kooy said that’s not what he wanted. “I was hoping God would infuse me with some superpower so I could do more and have a greater personal capacity for ministry. But that’s not what God was suggesting in this verse.”

So he decided to try things God’s way and prayed for more workers. He asked his wife, his students, his board, his classis, and everyone else he knew to pray for more workers.

And they came. In 2014, Kooy was joined by five leaders with hearts for campus ministry. Mimi Kashira-Haws, Paul Hanash, Evelyn Reid, Nancy Smith, and Steve’s wife, Julia Kooy, all joined the ministry.

“In the end, I did get a superpower—I got a super team of five staff and 21 student leaders, each with gifts to build God’s kingdom in powerful ways.”

God is blessing Geneva Fellowship like never before, with events filled to capacity, mentor relationships growing, students being baptized, and support pouring in, said Kooy.

One student said, “Thank you for listening to me and praying with me. I cannot tell you how thankful I am the Lord used you to reach me in a time I really, really needed it.”

Kooy gives God the credit for providing the leadership and support necessary to invest in the lives of so many students.

“It’s exciting to see thriving ministries like Geneva Fellowship, especially as we continue to start new campus ministries and expand into more academic institutions,” said Mark Wallace,  Home Missions Catalytic Leader for Campus Ministry.

About the Author

Scott Meekhof is communications coordinator for Christian Reformed Home Missions.

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