After a weeklong mission trip, three Youngstown State University students have returned to the area to share their stories of faith and the Jamaican culture with fellow members of the InterVarsity Christian Fellowship.
The three student members of IVCF were selected to stay on a Jamaican college campus to learn about the local culture and spread Christian principles.
“I knew that God was a global God, but I actually witnessed it for myself,” said Carinda Mickens, president of the group and one of the selected students. “The same God I love and worship here in America is the same God I loved and worshipped in Jamaica. That was awesome.”
The YSU students interacted with the students of the Jamaican version of IVCF, Universities and Colleges Christian Fellowship.
Mickens said the Jamaican students were so open and honest and that it was such a common occurrence that she found herself amazed.
“The students there always gave us their time to chat with them, and they were very open with their struggles and positions in spirituality,” she said.
Mickens said the culture is very different from that of YSU.
“Many students I’ve come across at YSU are doubtful and needs ‘proof’ for God, or have a lot of questions regarding God’s character and existence,” she said. “That wasn’t a very popular topic in Jamaica at all.”
Kadrian Hinton, another student who was selected for the trip, said the people were nice — even nicer than Americans.
Aaron Ware, the final member selected, said he admires the fact that they are so nationalized within the issues.
“Jamaica has its social issues, but the respect Jamaicans have for their country is a common attitude amongst everyone who lives there,” he said.
Wares said he enjoyed spreading the word of God and that he did not experience any of the issues that people associate with Jamaica.
“My host family told me to tell everyone in the States that Jamaica is not what is portrayed on the news. It is a country that possesses many beautiful things,” he said.