What is Urbana
“Urbana is a student missions’ conference and we’re committed to all three of those things that it is designed specifically for undergrad and graduate students,” InterVarsity’s Ruth Hubbard says.
“It is focused on global missions, and it’s a conference. We’re not trying to be a separate organization or something beyond that. It is an event.”
Every three years, InterVarsity brings together 16,000 students from around the country to get involved in over 200 seminars, prayer ministry sessions, and meet with more than 260 sending organizations who have the same passion for sharing the Word of God worldwide.
Hubbard says Urbana is different from other ministry events because of its long-term commitment to global missions.
The event encourages first-timers in ministry and those who have been in the mission field for a long time and directs them on how they can get involved.
Specific seminars are targeted to students who are “ready to dig in and want to explore specific areas of missions to understand certain parts of the world, the challenges they might encounter in various places and spaces.”
This event centers on helping students take their next step in missions by connecting them with different organizations, graduate schools or seminaries, and specific training. It is also so they can become more grounded in their faith with Christ.
Helping to Grow Students’ Faith
To help students grow in their spiritual walk, the event has large group morning Bible studies and a main Biblical theme for each Urbana conference.
“One of the hallmarks of the event is that it is grounded in God’s Word and saturated in scripture,” Hubbard says.
This year’s Urbana event will be centered around the book of Revelation, which Hubbard says is not a typical mission’s conference theme.
So, why did InterVarsity choose to focus on Revelation?
“The book of Revelation begins with a description that this is the revealing, the unveiling of ultimate reality that… is the eternity where God is worshipped around the throne by people from every tribe, nation, tongue, language, all the ethnic[s]. And so, having that vision and view of God is something that moves people,” Hubbard says.
InterVarsity has a vision for this student generation to move with God in being “whole world, whole life disciples”, meaning living out a life with a vision of God’s love for the world.
“We know that God is infinitely more. He is eternal, so infinitely more than we know or understand… And seeing that, that God’s love and grace reaches out to the furthest corners of the earth would be something that would compel people.”
InterVarsity is praying God will use Urbana to do just that.
Urbana 18 will be in St. Louis, Missouri from December 27, 2018 to December 31, 2018.
Sign up at Urbana.org to join a group of 16,000 students passionate about sharing the Word of God. If you’re not a student, but would still like to join, you can sign up as a volunteer or participant.