The Baptist Student Union (BSU) went south to Arlington, Texas and spent their break being religious mentors to middle and lower income children. The BSU sent 45 Northern Kentucky University students to Mission Arlington, a Christian group dedicated to gather people for Bible studies in apartment club houses, mobile homes, and neighborhoods spreading the word of God. Four months of prayer and a few bible studies lead to the foundation of Mission Arlington in 1986 by Tillie Burgin. “Taking church to the people” is the motto of this mission which is run completely by donations.
Five hundred college and high school students from around the country joined NKU’s chapter of the PSU to spread their beliefs. They visited apartment complexes in Arlington attracting children with organized games. The sounds of voices singing “Father Abraham” and “Happy and you know it” rang joyously through southeast Arlington. This mission attracted 5,400 children.
According to Christy Marlow, interim campus minister, students’ morning hours were spent cleaning buildings, moving chairs and other various service projects. Families even received help moving, Marlow said. By afternoon many were reading bible stories and completing crafts pertaining to the day’s lesson.
Katie Goins, NKU student, said she helped an eleven-year-old girl reach Christ ten minutes before leaving Texas.
“I gave Melva a salvation bracelet and explained each bead to her,” said Katie. “She found Christ through this bracelet.” These salvation bracelets represent Black as sin, red as Christ’s blood, white as cleansing, green as growth, and yellow represents the gates of heaven. This bracelet was a last minute tool, Katie said, enabling her to spread God’s word.
Christy Marlow commented, “Mission Arlington is a unique and effective way for people to meet physical and spiritual needs.”
BSU students left imprints upon many children’s hearts. Mark Treas, NKU freshman, worked with a seven-year-old girl named Lotty. “She didn’t want me to leave,” said Mark. “She said she loved me and goodbye.”
BSU is open to everyone. They are not geared solely towards Baptist, though founded by The Baptist Convention. Many of their members are Catholic, Presbyterian and other religions. They work as an outreach group to students on campus. BSU upcoming events include Spring Banquet, April 20 and the promoting of Billy Graham Crusade, June 27-30.