The More Sibyl Podcast Presents: The One with The Bunns
Meet the Bunns or like I call them, Love Bunns; they are one of my favorite dyads in the world. Despite just meeting them a little over a year ago in Oklahoma, I consider myself blessed and honored to be a part of their family and that I get to call them “fremily” (family+friends).
Charlie and Dona Bunn are also the Directors/Chi-Alpha campus pastors for the University of Central Oklahoma. Chi-Alpha is an outreach ministry to universities to reach students, reconcile them to Christ, and transform the university, the marketplace, and the world. Statistics have reported that 85% of international students have neither eaten in an American home and 75% have never been in an American home. The Bunns, through their ministry, are trying to change those statistics. For twenty years, they have been building community for international students to give them a sense of belonging.
In this episode, we explored how Americans can benefit from multiculturalism, and how internationals (students) in the US contribute to broaden the worldview of Americans. We also talked about what Americans can do to change the perception held by most internationals of Americans of being just friendly but not necessarily good friends.
They are in need of funds for renovations, generate scholarships for students, and so much more.
Donations towards their ministry can be made here: goo.gl/YNa7dj
Contact the Bunns: Email: firstname.lastname@example.org, Instagram: ucochialpha, Facebook: Charlie Bunn, Dona Bun
PS: I joined Chi Alpha in 2011 when I was a student in Austin, and I credit this group for enriching my American experience as they were very beneficial to helping me build community.
Fun facts about The Bunns:
Their kids have traveled for international mission trips to Haiti, El-Salvador, Jamaica.
Dona, like all the little girls who grew up in Montana then, wanted to be an Olympic skater. Now she applies her degree in counseling to help international students through her ministry.
Growing up in a small town in Arkansas, Charlie could have fought fires in Montana but now sees himself living in another foreign country.
They do really have a heart and love for international students.
Through this ministry, the Bunns have had contact with students from more than 125 countries.
It is worth the extra effort to befriend international students. Take the time, ask questions, as they want you to have a genuine interest in their lives.
There is room in your heart to show some love to international students
Wherever you may find yourself and when in need of community, find the Charlies and the Donas.
Cultural exchange is a two-way street; you are also helping Americans learn more about your culture as much as you are learning about theirs.
Don’t be afraid to ask questions.
“If God has called you to be a ditch digger, any other thing you would do (e.g., doctor) will be a step-down. I think sometimes we place importance on a certain level of job, income, notoriety. Whatever God has called you to do is what you should be doing. Find what your talents are, and find how to make money from there.” - Charlie
"We love it. We love that our kids did not see color. I am glad that they have an appreciation for international students and can easily connect with people. And I am a little jealous of that because we were raised differently." - Dona
“Before Christ, I enjoyed people to a certain extent. After Christ, God gave me more of a love and a trust. I don’t think I trusted people very much before; I was suspect of so many things." – Charlie
"Kola" - Damien Jurado (2016)
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