An emerging trend in missions points to the future of the Great Commission.

By January 28, 2005

International (MNN)–In the 1970’s you could count on one hand the number of young people doing short-term missions.

Now, that focus on evangelism and missions has become a standard feature in thousands of churches across the country.

It’s a trend that has an up side and a down side. SIM’s Steve Strauss says their focus for short-term missions is on more than a group or an individual going out and doing ‘their thing’ for a block of time. “We want to make sure that short-term missions is fitting into a long-term strategy on the ground and in the field. That is, making sure that what they’re doing is part of what the national church or mission teams on the ground have in mind for long-term strategies for evangelism.”

Strauss says more people want to go out, but not commit to long-term missions. However, “We’re also seeing that almost all of our long-term missionaries are those who’ve had some kind of short-term experience. Long-term missionaries, these days, are coming out of short-term experiences and our programs need to be shaped and crafted to fit all of those realities.”

Strauss says their re-vamped missions program is in support of the vision of churches. They want to help those interested get a sense of what is going on around the world–in short, a positive effect on those that go out and a long-term effect on those who stay on and carry on the results of the work.

If you’re interested in exploring a short-term trip, hit the ‘go on a trip’ button for MNN’s short-term missions database.

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