The Friendship Program
Opportunities for Friendship & Hospitality with International Students
When we think of global missions, often in our country, we need not think any further. Canada has ranked near the top of desired destinations, especially for education. The questions that arise, maybe, Lord, what are you doing and what are the opportunities you are inviting us to respond? Or how do we connect with those from around the world, which in many ways, represent one of the finest global mission opportunities of the millennia?
Quite often, it starts with practical presence and friendship. The cultures of those coming from abroad are vastly different from ours. Friendship, hospitality, and community are greatly valued. One of our greatest resources to intersect with the nations next door is simple - people willing to extend the love of Jesus in the organic context of friendship and hospitality.
Friendship and hospitality represent one of the greatest needs among those coming to our educational institutions in Canada. So start looking for opportunities in your community.
If you are in the Calgary area, The Friendship Program can help. This University of Calgary-based program connects International graduate students (Masters & Ph.D.) with Canadian families for friendship. It's an easy make-your-own adventure by simply including a pair of students once every 6-8 weeks, with whatever you enjoy doing. Meals, dessert, a board game, a church service and Christmas with helpful explanations, culture conversations at a backyard fire or whatever you like.
The vast majority of those who come to Canada will never enjoy the pleasure of experiencing a friendship with a Canadian family and the perspective of life seen from a Canadian living room! The unconditional love of Christ comes in many ways, but it often starts with simply being present!
Here is a short video from our partner The Friendship Program on how to bless international students here in Canada.