Dear Just Love Students & Alumni,

I am sure that you will all have seen the impact that the Covid-19 virus is having on the world. We, like everyone else, want to take reasonable and sensible precautions to make sure that we are protecting those who are vulnerable to the virus. We believe that God is bigger than the strange times we are in but want to ensure that we and you are taking the right precautions.

The headlines are, that we suggest you all follow the advice of the Government and your universities. Please make sure that you are washing your hands regularly with soap and warm water and that you are self-isolating yourself and your household for 14 days if you develop either a persistent cough or a fever.

Please also avoid any unnecessary socialising. Avoid going to pubs, clubs, theatres or places where people gather.

We are aware that many of you have already cancelled upcoming events in accordance with guidance from your universities. If you still have events running, please do cancel them as they likely come into the category of “unnecessary socialising”. We know that this will be a disappointment to many of you who have put significant time and effort in to planning your events. We are sorry that it has come to this but would encourage you to come up with creative alternatives. Just because we cannot gather physically, does not mean that you are unable to inspire and release every Christian student to pursue the biblical call to social justice. Could you turn your event in to a social media campaign? Could you run a blog series focussing on hope through these testing times? Could you run virtual discussions on issues of injustice? If you are healthy, could you encourage your peers to support vulnerable members of our communities? We have added a link to some of the groups who are coordinating responses.

We are also aware that staff members are due to be visiting Just Love groups to do end of term and start of term meetings with outgoing and incoming committees. Sadly, we do not think it is sensible for our team to be travelling between cities at this time. Any meetings with staff members who do not live in your city will be done over skype/google hangouts/facebook messenger video. Your staff worker will be in touch to organise this.

Finally, for incoming committee members, as I’m sure you know, our Easter Training Events are just around the corner. We are extremely sad to have to cancel our Easter Training events but the advice we have received from our board of trustees is to do so. We will be putting on “virtual JLETs” which you will all be invited to. We will inform you of more details as to what this will look like once we nail them down. We hope that this will a fun alternative to gathering together and that those of you who are joining committees will still receive a high level of training. In the face of this crisis, it has never been more important that our generation of the church fully grasps God’s call to serve the most vulnerable. While it will be different to what we had planned, we are determined to continue to equip you for a whole-life, lifelong pursuit of justice.

Now more than ever the world needs a generation of leaders who are sold out for Jesus and justice. In these times our vision has become more, not less, urgent. This might be the most chaotic global climate of our lifetimes – how are we going to respond? Who are we going to become? Are we going to become more or less like Jesus?

This is a difficult time for us all, but we hold on to the hope that God has for us – that his love, grace and mercy is bigger. So, let’s continue to seek Him, take care of ourselves and others, and pursue the call to a life of biblical justice.

With lots of love from,

The Just Love Staff Team x