Student Forum shows differences, similarities


By Shawn Foles
Guest Columnist

Student Forum is a wonderful, eye-opening experience for college students. It allows students to spend several days with other students from around the country. It makes students aware of the fact that even though we are the same church, there are different opinions within our own denomination.

I had the privilege this year of traveling in June with several of my fellow Mississippi Conference delegates to Tacoma, Wash., for this year’s annual Student Forum.

I love going to Student Forum for the growth that it allows me with my faith, and as an individual. The lessons I gain while attending this forum allow me to better deal with real life situations. It gives me the opportunity to better equip myself to serve in the church, as well as the opportunity to stay up to date on issues that currently face the church. The growth, both as a person and spiritually, I have gained from my years at Student Forum are immeasurable.

This year I was given the honor of being selected one of the Southeastern Jurisdiction representatives to the Steering Committee. The Steering Committee is a panel of 15 students — three from each jurisdiction — that meets throughout the year to plan Student Forum. I am elected to this position for two years, and it is my duty to make sure the voice of the SEJ is heard on the committee.

I hope to use my position on the Steering Committee to help diversify the issues covered at Student Forum as well as make sure that the issues that are important to the SEJ such as Katrina recovery are acknowledged. I am grateful for the chance to represent this conference and the jurisdiction on this committee.

I hope that you will realize what an integral role college students and young adults play in our ministry. I encourage you to take time to find a college student you know who has been part of a Wesley Foundation and find out what impact it has had on his or her life. I think if you will do this you will be pleasantly surprised. 

Foles is a student at the University of Southern Mississippi.