My name is Daniel Watts, and I am excited to announce that I am the new G92 Coordinator! I’m really excited to jump right in with all that G92 is doing.
Over the past few months, a lot of exciting things have been happening with G92. After the great response to the G92 Immigration Conference at Cedarville almost a year ago and the ensuing conference at Samford earlier this year, it became clear that G92 was here to stay. G92 was growing so quickly that what it needed was a full-time coordinator, someone who was passionate and dedicated about getting a generation of young believers to view immigration through the lens of their Christian faith. That’s where I come in! In order to explain how I fit into G92, I’ll tell you a bit about my background, what initially drew me to G92, and my hopes and goals for the movement.
I grew up in a working class neighborhood in the Bronx, a borough in New York City. Most, if not all, of my neighbors were immigrants from the West Indies. I was blessed to grow up in a strong Christian household in which my parents emphasized the importance of living out our faith in the real world by striving to be a voice for those who had none. As a result of this strong Christian faith my family held, I grew up being involved with several different evangelical churches. Two of these were pastored by immigrants; one was from India and one was Jamaican. As a result of this upbringing, I have never seen immigrants as being people who were fundamentally different from me; rather, I have always viewed immigrants as neighbors, classmates, spiritual leaders, and most importantly, as friends.
While my upbringing gave me this perspective on immigrants, it also instilled in me a great dedication to my faith. As I mentioned, I grew up being involved with several evangelical churches in New York City. Attending and working with churches of several different denominational backgrounds gave me a great appreciation for the church. It also gave me a great desire to see Christians from different denominations standing together for a unified purpose: to dedicate their efforts to glorifying God.
After graduating from high school, I headed west to Wheaton College, where I studied International Relations. During my time at Wheaton, I had several great experiences that allowed me to grow as a student, as a person, and most importantly, as a Christian. I was able to continue working with immigrants through a variety of ways during my four years there, including a summer internship with World Relief Chicago teaching English to newly arrived refugee kids. I also held several leadership positions in student groups, including a stint as President of the William Osborne Society.
So, what does all of this have to do with G92? Well, when I found out there was an initiative called G92 that sought to inspire young evangelicals, primarily Christian college students, to come to view immigration through the lens of their faith and to take action accordingly, I realized that it was a natural fit for me! I grew up around immigrants, attended school with them, and have been pastored and blessed by them. Thus, when I see hardworking immigrants not being treated justly, my heart goes out to them and I want to do what I can to end the injustice. Not only did my background give me a heart for immigrants, but growing up with such a wide exposure to the Church gave me a love for the Body of Christ. In particular, it gave me a passion for seeing Christians of all backgrounds working together. Immigration is an issue on which evangelical Christians of different denominational and socioeconomic backgrounds can stand together and affirm a set of common values and statements. The Bible has a lot to say about the way immigrants should be treated, and Christians across the political spectrum are increasingly joining together to say, “We want the US government to enact immigration policies that are in line with the way the Bible says immigrants should be treated” (as you can see from our “About” page!). Finally, my time at Wheaton gave me a lot of experience leading student groups, really monitoring the pulse of a campus, and tapping into the resources that are available there. These experiences fit right in with G92’s goals of being a resource to student groups on college campuses that want to be involved in the issue of immigration.
In short, G92 is a natural extension of the passions that my upbringing and college experiences have given me. I am really excited about the chance to be a part of bringing about justice for a disadvantaged group, and I am really looking forward to doing so with Christian students who are coming together from all types of different backgrounds to display Christian unity. G92 Portland will be my first event in this new role, and I can’t wait to see how God works through G92 on October 2nd! My prayer is that Portland will be just the start of a process that shows God moving among young evangelicals as we draw closer to Him and His heart by working to incorporate those of His people who are unjustly marginalized.
Thanks for reading! Obviously, I only got to share a little bit about myself, but I hope I’ve managed to convey a bit of my heart for G92 through this post. I would also love to hear about you! If you want to get in touch with me, just email me at [email protected]. I can’t wait to hear from you, and I look forward to meeting you at a G92 event in your area!
Daniel Watts graduated from Wheaton College in August 2012 and is the new G92 coordinator.
Please note that the views expressed do not necessarily represent those of everyone associated with G92 or any institutions with which the blogger may be affiliated.
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