Short-term Missions: blessing or a curse? (Part 1/2)

As we prepare for our first two interns coming next week, I found this article, and really appreciated it. I will probably read our interns sections of it because it is so right on point with what we want them to understand about coming here. It can be so easy to get into our rut (or rather a singular focus) here of language learning and ministry and forget everything else around us, and we are very excited to have the renewed energy that will come with these two lovely God sends. Be praying for them and for us.

In recent years there have been a number of blog articles, books and online discussions which question the validity of short-term mission teams. It might seem that short-term missions is losing its glow as people realize the inordinate cost of sending teams and individuals overseas for two or three weeks and wonder if it wouldn’t be better to use that money to invest in long-term missionaries or supporting national workers.

Over the past fifteen years we have been privileged to host literally hundreds of people, primarily students, on short-term mission trips in Thailand. We have seen the good, the bad and the ugly. We have hosted teams who have made us laugh and one or two who have made us cry. At the end of a team visit we are always exhausted and behind with 101 mundane admin and practical tasks which have been squeezed out of the schedule by…

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One thought on “Short-term Missions: blessing or a curse? (Part 1/2)

  1. I really appreciate this article, considering how much negative attention short-term missions are getting. Yes, they can be done wrong, but they are also how many missionaries these days (if not the vast majority of them) got excited about missions in the first place. They work best I think if you are helping people who are there long-term, and I never really thought about how much it might be refreshing to those missionaries to be talking and hanging out with people from their own culture for a change. Thanks for sharing!

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