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

Growing Collaboration with Mission Agencies

By Marti Wade

We’re very encouraged to observe increased collaboration between leaders in the short-term mission movement and organizations that field missionaries long-term. While there is some overlap between these two groups, many organizations work exclusively to field short-term teams. Mission trips associated with long-term sending agencies, which usually operate somewhat differently in terms of length and purpose, are a small percentage of the total.

We have much to learn from one another, but conversations often take place in separate networks and venues. Sometimes this leads to prejudices or misunderstandings. Few have had the time, money, or relational bandwidth to cross the subtle divide. Yet this division seems to be breaking down. We couldn’t be more pleased.

Recently, for the third year in a row, the Standards of Excellence in Short-term Missions (SOE) network partnered with the largest evangelical mission network in North America, Missio Nexus to provide a short-term missions track for its annual mission leaders conference. This year the conference was held in Orlando, Florida and attracted nearly 1000 mission agency leaders and other participants.

Being part of this event allowed SOE leaders (including our David Armstrong) the opportunity to facilitate conversations on how to improve engagement in short-term mission. They also provided training in implementing seven key areas of excellence in short-term mission endeavors. A pre-conference workshop introducing the seven standards and the SOE membership process was again this year completely full, and reviews of the workshop were very positive. Please pray for these relationships to bear fruit for the Kingdom.

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