A multicultural group of students started a new journey at Newbold College of Higher Education in Bracknell, England, as they joined the One Year in Mission and Service (OYIMS) program on January 24, 2022. Students hail from several different countries that are part of the Trans-European Division (TED) of the Seventh-day Adventist Church.
On the first official day of training, several newly enrolled students shared their reasons for joining OYIMS and how God led them to enroll in the program. Mia, from Estonia, heard about the initiative through what she called “a providential coincidence” — a conversation with a friend. That conversation convinced her to move to England and start a new chapter in her life.
Victoria, from Ireland, was finishing her nursing degree when she heard about the program. “Mission was always in my heart; this is why I studied nursing in the first place.” So, she took the leap and enrolled in the program, to “grow in my walk with God and develop skills and confidence to share the Word and create community,” she said. She invited her friend Maddy, also from Ireland, who wanted to change direction in her life and “learn how to share the gospel.”
Something similar happened to Ethan, from Birmingham, England, who, after hearing about OYIMS, could not keep it to himself and invited Douglas to join. Even Linnea, who joined via videocall from Sweden, could not stop smiling. “The students were bubbling with excitement because they were embarking on an adventure of faith and mission,” program coordinators said.
“OYIMS is a program designed to inspire and equip young people to became missionaries,” Dejan Stojković, TED youth ministries director, said. Students enrolled in the program study the theory of mission at Newbold for three months, before heading to the mission fields to apply what they learned. “They can serve in Serbia, Bosnia, Macedonia, or Albania, supporting Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA) projects, and anywhere else in the world through Adventist Volunteers Services,” Stojković said.
The TED made 10 scholarships available to support students (aged 11 to 30) from across the division to enroll in the program. The scholarships cover the total cost of the program, including tuition and accommodation on campus.
“There is still time to apply,” Stojković said. He urged current and prospective students to accept the challenge. “Step out of your comfort zone and take the opportunity to make lifelong friendships,” he said.