International (MNN) – Feeling called to make a radical commitment and sacrifice for Christ? Thinking about long-term missions but don’t know where to start? PIONEERS USA can help.
Through its Venture program, people can take a mission trip, anywhere from one month to a year. There are multiple opportunities to choose from, with groups currently in West and East Africa, South Asia, and the Middle East, among other countries. The goal is to help mission-minded people discover their God-given purpose and gain a better understanding of what long-term ministry entails.
“There are really two types of people that we work with,” says Jacob with PIONEERS. “Some have a specific skill that they want to use overseas. So that could be anything from being an English teacher, to being a nurse, or pretty much anything in between….
“The other type of people that we work with [are those] just trying to figure out what the next step is. They’re interested in what long-term missions is. They would love to find out more, but they don’t really have any experience to back that up, so they need some time to be able to go and experience what it’s like.”
The latter group consists primarily of the millennial generation. More and more North American young people are becoming interested in long-term missions, so PIONEERS has shifted its focus from Business as Mission (BAM) and second-career missionaries to meeting the needs of the younger generation.
“You often hear, ‘Would you consider long-term missions?’ And they kind of freeze [and say], ‘I’m not sure that I’m ready to make that commitment,’ Jacob says. “Most people are thinking, ‘That’s 25 years,’ in their minds. But really it can be a lot less than that.
“So we’re hoping that they can get out there and experience it for a short period of time, and then realize through that process as they’re wrestling with the Lord, that this is really what He is asking them to do with their lives.”
According to Jacob, about 33% of people who took a Venture trip last year went back for long-term missions work. This year, he expects even more.
“We haven’t seen as many people going for smaller amounts of time this year. A lot of the people that we’re seeing are going six months and over,” Jacob says. “That is typically where we see the vast majority of people switching from Venture to long-term.”
Feeling called to the mission field yourself? PIONEERS has plenty of opportunities to get involved. Click here to search for a trip that suits your passions.
If visiting another country isn’t an option, you can always support those who do. Click here to donate to one of the many PIONEERS projects.