BCM Alumni Spotlight: Jacob Telano
When their years at the University of Louisiana at Monroe (ULM) have concluded, many BCM students will share the love of Christ in their chosen career fields. Others will enroll in seminary or pursue full time ministry in a church setting.
But then some students follow the Lord into faraway places, taking the Gospel with them. Often, these students find a passion for missions or delve deeper into that calling through opportunities provided by the BCM. Jacob Telano is one of those students.
Telano had long held a passion for serving others, and when he arrived at ULM he took advantage of several domestic missions opportunities through the BCM. After taking many such trips with the BCM, Telano had the opportunity to spend a summer serving with nearly 30 college-aged summer missionaries during the Alaskan dip-netting season.
“We learned so much about serving that summer,” said Telano. “We were actually responsible for hosting teams of churches each week and setting them up to serve. It was an amazing experience!”
Telano said that trip changed him, and while he didn’t know it then, it would end up changing the course of his future too! After a season of searching and praying about the next steps in his life, the Lord began to bring Alaska back to Telano’s mind. Telano explained he got this “crazy feeling” that he needed to go back to Alaska, so he scheduled another trip to return for the summer. While there, however, the Lord placed it on Telano’s heart to stay and to serve the people of Alaska indefinitely.
Today, the West Ouachita native calls Alaska home. “The longer I’m here in Alaska,” Telano reflected, “the more God continues to affirm that this is where I’m called to, and raising worshipers is what I’m commissioned to.”
Telano has fallen in love with the people and the beauty of Alaska, but explains that the natural beauty of the landscape is contrasted with immense darkness among its people.
“We have some of the highest rates of suicide, depression, abuse, crime, and homelessness in the country," he said. "Less than 10% of people claim to have a relationship with God, and less than that number actually have a relationship with Jesus.”
Despite the immense lostness, Telano knows God is moving in Alaska. He and many others are working hard to push back the darkness with the light of Jesus Christ.
Telano isn’t sure if he will call Louisiana home again anytime soon. “As far as what the future holds for me, I have no idea. I know I am still growing into a calling on my life that God has for me, and only He knows what’s in store, but I see myself being in Alaska for a while.”
Telano’s prayer is that he will do whatever the Lord needs him to and go wherever He calls him to in order to accomplish His good and perfect will.
Telano acknowledges the major impact that the BCM had on his life. “I am who I am today because of that ministry, and I’m at where I’m at because of the opportunities offered to me while I was there. The people I met there, both staff and friends, discipled and grew me in ways they didn’t even know. I’m so thankful for the BCM and how they loved me, taught me, disciplined me, grew me, challenged me, and ultimately sent me.”