United Christian Ministries (UCM) on the campus of Northwestern University is a diverse community of students who are on a shared journey to learn about faith. UCM supports one another, opening minds to think in new ways.
In the midst of busy campus lives, UCM hosts dinner, worship and discussion twice weekly. And they don’t shy away from the tough questions of faith, God and the church. Periodic retreats and programs introduce other faith traditions and cultures.
An annual international Friendship Mission Trip offers students opportunities to learn about social injustice first hand and how they can tackle complex social problems around the world. These trips are not only a time to serve, but also a time to build international friendships.
UCM returned to El Salvador last spring. Students prepared for the trip with personal research and readings. The group met to familiarize themselves with the political, economic, social, and religious reality of life in El Salvador. This program is a long-term educational initiative to encourage students to connect with social justice issues they feel passionate about.
Two students have already started a weekly Bible study which explores relevant Biblical passages about social justice and the poor. We hope students will be inspired to volunteer to work on social justice issues locally, take a trip (or another one) abroad with UCM or even organize their own trip internationally. This year a UCM graduate (Class of 2010) who had been on several UCM trips organized and led a trip to Guatemala for a local middle school church youth group. Through these trips and the witness of others, we hope that current students know the lasting impact of how they can make really work toward bringing the kingdom of God to earth.