International Fellowship of Evangelical Students
- International Fellowship of Evangelical Students
The international Fellowship of Evangelical Students (iFES) is a worldwide group of Protestant students that aims to enlist other students in spreading its theologically conservative Christian message.
In 1910, a group of Protestant student leaders in England withdrew from the World Student Christian Federation (WSCF) to found the more conservative Inter-Varsity Fellowship. The movement spread to Canada in the 1920s and to the United States as World War II began. After the war, members of 10 national evangelical campus fellowships in China,Austria,New Zealand, North America, and several European countries met at Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts, in 1947 to form the International Fellowship of Evangelical Students.
The American-based InterVarsity Christian Fellowship was the largest national affiliate of the new group.
By the end of the 20th century, IFES included members from 145 countries. It has become a training ground for Evangelical leadership; students originally associated with IFES have gone on to work for groups such as the Lausanne Committee for World Evangelism and the Evangelical World Alliance.
The IFES affirms the "divine inspiration and entire trustworthiness of Holy Scripture, as originally given." The organization has a primary goal of training students to reach other students with the Christian message. Since the mid-1990s, IFES has focused on reaching students in the Muslim world.
IFES has been served by three executive secretaries: C. Stacey Woods (1947-75), Chua Wee Huen (1975-91), and Lindsey Brown (1991-pres-ent). Its international headquarters is located in Harrow, England.
■ International Fellowship of Evangelical Students. http://www.ifesworld.org
■ Nicholas Lossky, et al., eds., Dictionary of the Ecumenical Movement (Geneva: WCC Publications/Grand Rapids, Mich.: William B. Eerdmans, 1991)
■ A. Scott Moreau, ed. Evangelical Dictionary of World Missions (Grand Rapids, Mich.: Baker Book House, 2000).
Encyclopedia of Protestantism.
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