Keeping mission vision alive and growing A quarterly publication of Mission Data International

Archive for the ‘Internet plus missions’ Category

Celebrating 15 Years

Tuesday, April 7th, 2015

Bringing people and missions together using internet technology

This past month M-DAT celebrated its fifteenth year of serving the Christian community by connecting people with mission opportunities. Interest in M-DAT’s web services has consistently grown over the years. Will you join us in celebrating what God has done?

A Mission Trip Search Engine?

M-DAT was founded March 31, 2000. It grew from a vision to work with mission organizations to see a cooperative resource come together that would enable people to connect with mission opportunities quickly. Peter, our co-founder, recognized the need for such a service during his senior year at university. ShortTermMissions.com has now seen 2.2 million visits as people have searched for ways to serve God’s church and His kingdom around the world.

Services for Aspiring Missionaries

In 2009 the ministry expanded to include AskaMissionary.com, where missionaries answer questions and share about real life issues and challenges, and PreparingToGo.com, a resource center for would-be missionaries. In 2014 AskAMissionary.com had more than 88,000 visits and more than 180,000 page views.

Strategic Partnerships

Along the way we have partnered with scores of short-term and long-term sending agencies who use our services or contribute content, and also collaborated with ministries that equip and assist those who go.

This year, to continue our push for excellence in mission trips, we are promoting a web service that allows participants to rate their experience. MissionsTripsReviews.com was created by Amanda Jones who works for Christ for the Cities. Currently 13% of the organizations who post trips on ShortTermMissions.com have been rated there. We are encouraging the rest of our organizational partners to ask their short-termers to rate them there also.

Supporting M-DAT

Would you like to help expand the effectiveness of M-DAT services like ShortTermMissions.com and AskaMissionary.com? You can do so by giving through our online PayPal form. You do not need to have a PayPal account to do so. You may also send a check to M-DAT with a note to use the funds for expanding the reach of ShortTermMissions.com and AskaMissionary.com.

» Help support M-DAT with a donation through http://www.mdat.org/donate.

Lights, camera . . .

Friday, April 25th, 2008

 M-DAT Executive Director

I always thought steady cams were cool. Now, I know they are! Last week Paul and I made one out of a mono pod, a 2.5 pound weight, and a weed trimmer handle. We rigged up the contraption in preparation for a trip I take at the end of April. I fly to Atlanta to do a test video shoot at Operation Mobilization. If all goes well, it will be the first organization headquarters tour for the website we are developing for aspiring missionaries — a very exciting milestone.

For good reasons, selecting a mission organization to go with from the hundreds out there can be a daunting task. We believe these headquarter tours will take the edge off of that experience. Viewers will catch the vision of the organization, hear what God is doing through them, meet key staff, learn about the mission candidate process, and hear why people who serve with the organization decided to join up.

How we will cram all of this into a three to five minute video clip is a mystery. That is why we are looking for gifted video editors to volunteer their skills. Six have already stepped forward. We need at least six more so we can spread out the work and publish new video clips more frequently. If you have video editing skills you would like to apply to the Great Commission please contact us.

My trip to Atlanta will get us ready for a rather unique mission trip we are assembling a team for — a week-long mission headquarter blitz in July. Each day we will visit a mission agency and shoot the raw video for the tour. We will also conduct interviews with missionaries who are home from the field. We will inquire about key moments in their journey to the mission field and get their responses to questions commonly asked by aspiring missionaries. At night we will review our footage and start editing. In the morning we will move onto another mission agency. I anticipate this will be a challenging and fruitful week. If you are a cameraman or video editor and want to get in on the action we want to hear from you.

Interview with Stacy A.

Friday, November 2nd, 2007

This issue’s interview is with Stacy A., an aspiring missionary who grew up in Nebraska and presently lives in that state’s capital city, Lincoln. She addresses a few things here related to missions we’ve yet to talk about in Propel.

Propel: How long have you been interested in long-term missions?

Stacy: I have been interested in long term missions since I took Perspectives a little over two years ago.

Propel: When and how did this interest begin?

Stacy: I came to Christ in 1997. In 1998, I began to feel a tug toward missions, which I pretty much ignored for a while as I planned to go into politics, and missions would kind of just mess that up! But in late 1998 (I was still I in high school) I went to a youth conference in Denver. During the conference they did a presentation about different countries and people groups. I was fairly indifferent until I heard that “One Million Buddhists Die Every Year without ever hearing the name of Christ.” God broke me right there. I didn’t hear anything else during that conference; I couldn’t focus on the sessions, I was completely distracted by that statistic. Through a series of events during the conference that week, God really confirmed that he wanted me to go to Southeast Asia for missions work. He wasn’t clear on when or how long, just Southeast Asia.

Well, being young in age — and young in Jesus — I was ready to go that next summer. So, I got information from this conference about their trip to Southeast Asia My parents were not believers, but I was convinced that if God called me they would let me go. This may come as a surprise, but it didn’t work that way. I was promptly grounded and not allowed to go to church anymore. Some months passed and I was able to go back to church. I was greatly questioning this “call” I had received because my parents had acted so horribly against it. But this longing and ache for Southeast Asia, just wouldn’t leave my heart.

Finally, in 2002, the college group at my church was going to Southeast Asia. I applied and was accepted to the team. This trip confirmed my love for Southeast Asia more than any experience of my lifetime. It was pretty clear to me that even if God didn’t call me full-time that I would have to go semi-regularly to Southeast Asia. Perspectives was really the training ground in which God made clear that this was to be my life’s work. I still don’t have all the details of when or how, but as I have learned from previous experience, He’ll get me there in His time.

Propel: You’re interested in social issues and community development as missions, if I understand correctly. What are you doing now to specifically prepare yourself for this kind of work? (more…)

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