Sandra Hallig

Campus Missionary, Concordia University
sandra.hallig@cco.ca
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Hello! My name is Sandra Hallig. I am very blessed to say that I grew up in a Catholic Filipino family of 8 people — my two loving parents, Rolando Sr. and Noena, my brother Rolando and my sisters: Sarah, Samantha, Sabrina and Salena. Yes, we all look alike and you will get confused with who’s who. My family has played a great role in my love story with the Lord as this was where I was taught the faith. I first encountered the Lord in prayer when I was seven years old. My family and I were going through a rough time and I remember pleading to God to heal our wounds and He did. From this moment on, I knew God as my healer.

When I was in grade 8, I attended my first youth group retreat where I discovered how much God loves me, He desired to have a personal relationship with me and that He has this great big plan designed especially for me. As I began to explore deeper into my faith through prayer, I experienced God as my Father and my friend.

But, upon entering high school, I began to see downfalls to my faith. Though I went to a Catholic high school and was actively serving in my youth group, I felt my faith made me an outsider. I began to see my faith as something so limiting — I saw God as someone who deprived me of a “fun high school” experience. What was once love and admiration for God, transformed into fear and resentment, as I felt that believing in Him brought upon burden and judgement from others. Though I was serving as a youth group leader, I felt I was living a double life and they were both based on how I wanted others to perceive me.

I carried this notion of God with me in my first year of university and then, upon my second year, I got invited by someone from Ryerson Catholics to join a faith study. Out of desiring to be a part of something on campus, I said “yes” to joining a Discovery faith study, where I experienced something very familiar but, haven’t felt in a very long time. Throughout the lessons, the core messages were similar to the things I have learned about God at my first youth group retreat. But, what made this so different was hearing who Jesus was clearly and simply; It was hearing it at a university campus setting, surrounded by other young adults going through the same motions I was experiencing, who were proclaiming the gospel to others. This Discovery lesson was Jesus meeting me where I was and He was asking me to respond to Him. After Discovery, my faith study leader asked me if I wanted to put Jesus at the center of my life. I opened up about the fears I had of Jesus depriving me of a good life but, she spoke truth that He, does not deprive but, simply asks to be included in every aspect of my life because He genuinely desires to be — He desired nothing more but these aspects of my life grow. When I gave my “yes,” I can’t say I instantly felt a huge wave of relief but, I knew that I didn’t have to be two different people anymore. I was free from living a double life.

Putting Jesus at the center of my life allowed me to find and be authentic in who I am as a daughter of God. Ever since this commitment, I can confidently say that Christ did not take anything away from me but, dreamt and realized events in my life that I would have never been able to dream or imagine for myself. One major dream being a campus missionary and getting to witness students experience Christ just like I get to!

This upcoming year, I will be a Campus Missionary at Concordia University in Montreal, Quebec. I am extremely excited to be able to journey with students, walk with them through faith studies and to witness them put Jesus at the centre of their lives. I will always remember the words my first faith study leader spoke to me when I made this decision, “It is so beautiful to witness another soul growing closer to Christ,” and I couldn’t agree more! I am confident that God is so eager to do wonders on campus and I’m excited to see what He has in store for our students!

ONGOING PRAYER REQUESTS

Please pray for the conversion of more souls on university campuses, for missionaries around the world — that we may bring more souls back to the Church and my family.