My Word on WSCF Events
It took quite a long while to put my thoughts onto paper and answer the question of why I continued to attend WSCF events over and over. This happened not because of lack of ideas I had in my mind but on the contrary, there were too many positive emotions, faces, thoughts and feelings whenever I thought about the federation. My first experience with WSCF-E was in Berlin, 2010. That was the point when my journey with WSCF made a start. As I represented Young Christians for Peace and Democracy and as I served as an international contact person at the same organization, first of all I started to work hard on and ensure the idea of making our relations with WSCF-E more solid. After negotiations, many formal and informal talks, we finally organized with YCDP to become an associated member of WSCF-E, in 2011 at the European Regional Assembly in Logumkloster, Denmark.
Since then, I have been lucky to attend a number of WSCF-E events and even serve as a member of the Preparatory Committee of a WSCF-E conference on the topic of Xenophobia and Migration in Europe held in Velletri, Italy in 2012. Here I could write more and more about my amazing personal experiences with the federation, including my engagement at WSCF global level and mystanding as a proxy for a member of the WSCF Global Advocacy and Solidarity Committee, but now I would like to focus on the aspect that makes me keep attending the events and becoming a WSCF-er as such. I am always inspired to be a part of such activities and use each opportunity, to spend timewith the WSCF community. Why?
I will try to share the several reasons why WSCF is so precious for me. Firstly, it provides aunique chance to meet with young people from Orthodox, Protestant and Catholic backgrounds (and not only) and to share our faith and work towards social justice and peace in our communities. Throughout these years, I have met people from various cultural, national, religious, political and personal backgrounds and I really learned a lot from them. For me it is a great magic when people with all theirdifferencesmeet at WSCF events and in a second becomeso open to each other, even putting themselves at risk to be defenseless. This community always teaches how to trust one another;how to trust strangers and people regardless of our religious differences. During such meetings, we have to discuss sensitive and difficult topics, but we always find a way to be open-minded, tolerant and respectful to others. I always like to challenge my visions and in this way the WSCF gatherings have enriched my life so much.
What I really admire about WSCF work is that it desires to empower and educate young progressive Christians with the skills to become ecumenical leaders of their communities and to fight for justice and peace. And, I find it very wise because young students who are engaged inthe WSCF activities are future politicians, religious leaders, public figures, diplomats, teachers, stakeholders of the world.
Besides all mentioned above and besides travelling, exploring different cities, tasting and enjoying local cuisines, getting know a bit of history and culture and expendingones worldview, the best thing I love about WSCF, is the PEOPLE! Yes, the WSCF Community consists of some of the most amazing people I have met in my life. Even though, some people I have met just once we keep in touch and feel very close to each other. I always wonder, feel excited and happy about how many young people the federation can gather that are so committed to the WSCF’s work. It’s a pure commitment to what you really believe in without expecting anything. When I am recalling now people I have met through the years, I remember many happy and sad, joyful and melancholic faces with their successful or heartbreaking stories, but behind all of them I see a great power and ability to bring a positive change in this world. The faces of WSCF people are stucked in my mind and I am sure it will never disappear from there.
Through WSCF I made friends not just in the European region, but now I have friends in Jordan, Mexico, Malaysia, Zimbabwe, Philippines, Lebanon, Columbia, Syria, Uruguay, etc. in all continents. WSCF is a big family with members spread all over the world with such a strong connection. I always feel myself as a part of one great community. I feel that “We are many; we are one”.
As I said in the beginning, there are too many things in my head I would like to say about the World Student Christian Federation’s work and events.Even if I were asked to describe it in two sentences, I would never end my words without emphasizing one thing that is totally incredible that happens at WSCF meetings. Yes! Magic happens for me when we pray together. In Everyday life I do not regularlyattend church services as I wish, but ecumenical prayer is so much more powerful and magical for me. During such prayers and worship, I feel God with us and in us than never, when we sing Taize songs together we leave all our differences behind and unite in Christ. Very often in such moments tears come down from my eyes. And, these are the tears of happiness, happiness of unity!
Coordinator of SCM Georgia