Praying for Chinese Students

by Connie Yu
Posted on 1st October 2011

Will you join me in praying for Chinese young people who come to study in the UK?

Like other international students, when Chinese students come to the UK they not only hope for academic achievements, they also hope to experience British culture and practise their English. However, due to the language barrier or lack of connections with local people, they are usually confined to their own Chinese circle of friends. Those who have connections with British Christians not only have the chance to gain a better understanding of the culture and language, they also, through that friendship, have the opportunity to know Jesus. Please pray that more people would open their homes to Chinese students, to be friends with them.

Chinese students usually come over to study subjects chosen by their parents to prosper, hence you don't usually see them doing creative subjects. The common subjects Chinese students choose are - Accounting, Marketing, Finance, Management, or subjects that would promise a prosperous future. Young folk in China are not encouraged to think for themselves, thus their dreams and aspirations are usually shaped by their parents and society. Please pray that they would begin to think about the meaning of life, not just follow what they are told by their parents or the driven Chinese society. Please pray that they would be challenged about their World View and their atheist, pragmatic approach of life.

Most of Chinese students today are sent over by their wealthy parents, so the students don't need to work to support their studies; unlike the previous generation of Chinese students who had to work part time jobs to support their studies. This means that they often don't get the opportunity to integrate into the local community or society. For their free time, many of them would stay in their rooms and watch online Chinese films or Chinese TV programmes all the time, barely stepping out of their flats. They usually don't have any real contact with their immediate environment, don't have English friends and don't even use English much. One of their favourite weekend activities would be organized trips to places like outlet villages, to shop for world leading fashion and life style brands. Please pray that while they have everything they need materially, they would recognize the inner emptiness and the need for a Saviour.

I work for Chinese Overseas Christian Mission (COCM), and our gospel team travels around many university campuses to reach out to Chinese students. We have a standard meeting where we providing a Chinese buffet meal, songs, games, videos, drama, a short gospel message, altar call and a time for chatting afterwards. We work closely with the local university chaplaincy, students' fellowship or local Chinese church so that when we leave, they can continue to follow up the students who have been to our events. Last year, we reached more than 700 Chinese students, and more than 60 of them raised their hands up at the altar call. Still more came to know Jesus in the follow up work done by local students' fellowships and churches. Please pray that they would come to our events with an open heart, and that these outreach meetings would be the beginning of their journey with Jesus.

Connie Yu works with Chinese Overseas Christian Mission in student outreach.