June 9, 2022

Ready or Not? Resuming Short-Term Mission in a Post-Pandemic World


Rev. Dr. Jen Haddox, Director of Global Engagement

“Trips do not accomplish our mission goals. Partnerships accomplish goals, and trips support the partnership.”  Tory Roark, Coach with Standards of Excellence in Short-Term Mission, www.soe.org.

I have missed short-term mission travel these past two years! I am feeling anxious to resume travel, both with eager anticipation and some trepidation!  I’m aware that there are new challenges for short-term mission as global travel resumes in a post-covid world. But, I am excited to get back out there and see, smell, and taste different cultures while touching base with friends around the world. I’m eager to “go and do” as part of God’s unfolding work among the nations. 

Maybe you’re also eager to get back out there on mission trips again, and like me needed to be reminded that it’s *not* the trip itself that accomplishes God’s mission. Relationships with mission partners is really where mission happens, and travel should be about being together with them first and foremost.  

We learned a few things during the pandemic that we shouldn’t “un-learn” now that the world is opening back up to travel.  First, we learned that God’s mission continues even when we can’t travel to be there ourselves. Let’s resume short-term mission trips even more aware of our role as short-termers: that God invites us to partner with his work in the world, and we shouldn’t do for our partners what they’ve realized they can do without us. Second, we’ve learned that we *can* do things differently when the pandemic forced us to. So, let’s not just go back to the ways we did short term mission before. Let’s implement new practices for discipleship and shape our short-term mission trips towards mutual encouragement in partnership with God and his people around the world.

If you missed participating in the recent Short-Term Mission Webinar, check out the recording and pick up some helpful insights for re-igniting short-term mission at your church.

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