Missions Questions.

Status
Not open for further replies.

baron

Puritan Board Graduate
I was reading the new issue of Reformed Presbyterian Witness and on the back cover it has, RP Missions is the short term missions organization of the RPCNA. I must confess I do not know a lot about Missions. My former church was not very good at supporting Missions.

My question's are:

1) Are short term missions worth while. Talking if you are going to travel say to Africa, would it be helpful? Or would it be better to send the money to the people on the ground there. Seeing how it would cost a great deal of money for air fare and other things, you do not speak the lanuage, so wouldn't it be better to just send money. They could then have extra money for what ever they needed. I'm sure they also could hire christian and non christian villagers to help out and that may be a good witness. (Are you getting in the way of the missionariers being short term?)

2) I know they say those involved in short term missions learn a lot but would it not be better say if your an American then go to a U.S.A. area?

3) Are you able to send money to a missionary direct, for them to use how ever they see fit? Or do you have to send the money to the organization and then they use the money how they see fit?

Sorry if my questions are confusing. Also no I'm not looking into becoming a missionary short term.
 

saintandsinner77

Puritan Board Freshman
I am a member of an RPCNA church- check out this link:RP Missions
It has some good articles that might address your questions.

As a personal story, I have been on two short term missions trip to Peru, South America (not with the RP). We had interpreters. On one occasion, I was able to give a sermon and one man prayed to receive Christ as his Lord and Savior afterwards. They were amazing trips- to be able to feed the poor, hand out gospel literature in Spanish, not to mention making new friends (whom I still chat online with) and trying exotic foods and visiting Incan ruins. I gave my testimony to a mixed crowd of believers and unbelievers with my friend translating for me. People down there welcomed us, though we were not all fluent in Spanish- they were impressed that as Americans, we would give up time and money to feed them and share the gospel with them. I would recommend a short-term trip to anyone who is able to go. It has the potential of revitalizing one's faith and seeing the bigger picture of advancing Christ's kingdom throughout the world.
 

py3ak

Unshaven and anonymous
Staff member
From my perspective as a missionary kid, short-term missions trips are not about helping the missionaries or the local population except in cases where there is a precise project like constructions or tutoring MKs. Of course many missionaries enjoy practicing hospitality, or the opportunity to have people bring them cheap electronics or pancake mix or whatever, so it isn't that they mind such sanctified vacations. But in my view the positive argument to be made for short-term missions trips is recruitment. I would suspect that most people who are missionaries today took a short-term missions trip before they decided to become missionaries themselves.
 

Edward

Puritanboard Commissioner
I've been on a few short term mission trips, 2 construction and one evangelistic. The biggest benefit that I've found for them is to engender a mindset toward supporting missions. Only a tiny subset of folks who go on the short term projects end up as career missionaries. But a much larger percentage end up supporting career missionaries.
 

baron

Puritan Board Graduate
I am a member of an RPCNA church- check out this link:RP Missions
It has some good articles that might address your questions.

Thank you I will check out the site later. As I was thinking if it would cost me say $3,000 on traveling to Africa or Asia, that money might be put to better use if I stayed home and sent the money. I know, for a fact there are a lot of poor people in my city, who I could minister to if I wanted.

Thank you all I have a lot to think on.
 

Andres

Puritan Board Doctor
I am a member of an RPCNA church- check out this link:RP Missions
It has some good articles that might address your questions.

Thank you I will check out the site later. As I was thinking if it would cost me say $3,000 on traveling to Africa or Asia, that money might be put to better use if I stayed home and sent the money. I know, for a fact there are a lot of poor people in my city, who I could minister to if I wanted.

Thank you all I have a lot to think on.

Brother, I think you bring up some excellent points and I commend you for desiring to best glorify God rather than John.
 

N. Eshelman

Puritan Board Senior
RP Missions is a great organization. They do short term trips overseas, but they also do home missions works. The thing that makes RP Missions different from so many mission organizations is ALL of the work done is done UNDER THE AUTHORITY OF SESSIONS that are in each location. When one goes through RP Missions they are working with a Session (pastors and elders) that are on location.

I think that this is important... of course, I am biased as well. :)
 

Edward

Puritanboard Commissioner
that money might be put to better use if I stayed home and sent the money.

That's a valid point in the case of the construction projects that I went on, they clearly could have hired local labor cheaper than the cost of my travel. On the other hand, If I hadn't spent the money on the missions trip, I probably would have expended the time and money on a vacation for myself, not on that project.
 

baron

Puritan Board Graduate
John,

What are your thoughts now after mulling this over for awhile?

I still have mixed feelings. I can see that going on a short term mission might lead you to support missions more. But why should that be the case? I read my bible and see that we should support missions.

But I still think that the money could be used to a greater extent by the person staying home and letting the missionary have the extra funds. I can gurantee you, that if I was to go on a short term mission I would be a burden. I would end up costing them time and resources. Would the little I bring compensate the missionary for the little I would be able to contribute. Now I'm sure there are people who can go on short term missions and be a great help.

I know this example is not the best. When I was working and in management we woud have foreign students come and help us so they could earn money to take back home for college. Now we ended up with good press and photo ops, but I knew having these people working for me would cost me time, I would have to take away from my regulair job. Still my regular work had to be completed. This then took time from my family. But it was good press and the bosses felt good. Of course it cost them nothing. I did meet some great young people though. So looking back after a few years have passed I do not mind it now, but I did then.

So as I said I still have mixed feelings. Maybe this is what is best for me but not others.
 

ChariotsofFire

Puritan Board Sophomore
If you've never been on a short-term mission project, I heartily recommend it. Back in 2008, I had the opportunity to go on a week long trip to Haiti.

If I had to summarize the benefits:
Positive spiritual effect on my own life
- Gave me a heart for the people and the mission work there, which is something that wouldn't have happened had I stayed home
- I am more ready now to give to missions, and to give to that particular work.
- I was able to worship with the Haitians and attend a conference that night (it was bilingual).
- Met other believers from the team and the native Haitians
- Had great times of fellowship
- I left with a better understanding of what it means to live in poverty

Positive spiritual effect on the people there
- Met Haitian believers and could encourage them in the Lord (even through the language barrier)
- Witness to unbelievers who saw us coming to help

Positive effect on their physical needs
- Helped teach them a skill (computer)
- Helped with construction projects

So looking at the physical needs, many of the things we did could have been accomplished through a more cost effect means, but I feel the trip had a lot more value than just the physical help we could bring the people there. At least for me personally, going on that trip gave me a more Christ-like perspective on life. God was sanctifying me, and I pray it was unto his glory. :sing:
 
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top