Methodist Student Network (MSN) is a Christian faith community made up of students who want to do service in the local and global community. A campus ministry sponsored by the United Methodist Church of South Carolina but open to young people with any or no denominational affiliation — students from come from USC, Columbia College, Midlands Tech, and Benedict College to participate.
At Washington Street, the Missions Committee, adult Sunday School Classes, United Methodist Men, and United Methodist Women all support the activities and ministry of the Methodist Student Network, which include mission trips.
In March 2012, the Methodist Student Network traveled to the Rio area of Brazil to be in mission and ministry in the city of Rio de Janeiro and in the coastal town of Buzios. There, students were involved in a variety of mission activities and service opportunities.
In Rio de Janeiro, the team was based at the Methodist mission, Methodist Central Institute for Children (ICP) located at the base of Rio’s oldest favella. After several days in Rio, MSN was hosted by the Methodist Church in Buzios. During the day, they worked in the poor areas of Rasa and Baia Formosa near Buzios performing several construction projects to upgrade substandard housing. They also set up a dental clinic and basic pharmacy.
While in Brazil, the students offered a day ministry (like Vacation Bible School) for the children in the area. They also engaged in food ministry to be in solidarity with the chronically hungry as they visited homes offering a tangible sign of God’s love.
In addition to the work and service activities, students were given opportunities to meet with the young people of the area to experience their culture and to share an American university perspective. The students also visited several local churches to take part in their worship and learn about their faith journeys.