“But there is another pull,” says Armstrong. “In the presence of hospitable Kenyans, we remember the importance of being friends. We remind one another that Jesus called his disciples friends, and we begin to discover that relationship must be at the heart of service.”

These relationships do more than change how Christians on different continents see one another, Armstrong says. “This is reshaping how we relate to one another in our respective homes. We’re drawing closer to our immediate neighbors as well.”

The short-term goal of the Umoja Project is to raise awareness of how the larger church can cooperate in supporting orphans, vulnerable children, and their guardians. “In the long-term, I think we’re discovering how God is raising up a new generation of leaders,” Armstrong says.

For the divinity interns, the summer will be an opportunity to experience ministry in new and unorthodox ways.

“We don’t build orphanages and shelters and schools,” says Daniels-Howell. “We don’t own anything. We work in local homes and from our cars. We hug the ground.”

More information on the Global Interfaith Partnership's Umoja project. You may also follow the summer experiences of student interns both abroad and in the United States.

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