Using Spotlight to practice English in a country like Vietnam or Ecuador or Mexico makes a lot of sense. People in these countries want to learn English to help them in their work. For the last ten years people have used Spotlight to accomplish this purpose. But why would Spotlight be helpful in an English-speaking country like England or the United States?
The fact is, community identities are changing. Immigrants are moving to find work. Refugees are fleeing from persecution. Entire families are making a fresh start in new countries. Words of Hope sees this as an opportunity to help churches embody the love of Christ to people often on the margins of their new society. This is done through Spotlight English Clubs (SEC).
Spotlight English Clubs are a way to reach out to a non-English speaking community. An SEC is not a Bible study; it is a place for volunteers to serve people by helping them practice speaking English. SECs build relationships, and through those relationships, share the good news of Christ.
SECs bring people together. In London there is a club with members from around the globe. There is a large group of Pakistani Muslim women, an intergenerational Mongolian family, and participants from Japan, Korea, India, and many Eastern European countries. Another SEC serves the third most populous Muslim community in England. The participants come together to practice English, but they end up connecting with each other and with the local church.
The United States is changing just like the rest of the world. It still represents a special opportunity to thrive or a chance to escape persecution. Many churches are already partnering with Words of Hope to use Spotlight English Clubs to meet the needs of immigrants and refugees in their communities. This is a great chance for RCA churches to serve people in their communities who often feel lost, alone, and overwhelmed by a new culture.
There is nothing quite like Spotlight because it serves people all around the world. Still, the program only reaches a small percentage of the people who could benefit using it. To spread the word, the Spotlight team is making a video, developing the club coordinator website, and refining the packet materials.
Most importantly, because of support from people like you, Words of Hope offers Spotlight and all club materials free of charge.