At this point in the year, I’m not sure who’s more excited for the summer—the adults or the kids. Here in Minneapolis, we are just excited to see some sunshine!
For youth workers, we know that the end of the school year kicks off a busy summer, whether it includes some mission trips or this year, a fun adventure to Youth Gathering.
Earlier this month, Bryan and Erik hosted Dave Sherer, a hip hop artist you may know as Agape, in our podcast studio here in Minneapolis to get some insight into how you can lead a great mission trip.
So, how can you lead a great mission trip?
There are a few things to know as you are planning and leading a mission trip to make it great—for you, your youth, and for the community you are serving. Bryan brings up a great point that we often think about mission trips on a micro-level, instead of turning it into a two-way witness, where there’s an opportunity to be part of a community, learn what they need, and establish the need and become part of that community.
What does it mean to be a two-way witness?
Dave shares that he has the perfect acronym that he focuses on when he’s thinking about mission trips: R.I.S.E.
Relational comes first. It means building that relationship with God and others to ensure that we have the feedback loop. To ensure that we are serving others in the way that they need to be served.
Speaking of feedback, Dave talks about how we can be intentional in our actions and in our missions. We can support communities in a way that’s thoughtful and helpful for them, free of assumptions of what we think they need and serving what they actually need.
Sustainability serves as an important cornerstone for being a two-way witness. It's about sustaining a mission that you have committed to. And ensuring that you are serving that community or need completely.
Lastly, Dave points out how important it is to be ethical in our missions—taking into consideration the cultural differences that we must not ignore in doing our work.
What else contributes to a great mission trip?
If you are interested in learning more from Bryan, Erik, and Dave, check out the podcast! In addition to these tidbits, they share how to prepare your group for the experience and identify the common mission pitfalls—and how to avoid them.
Each month, we profile one of your favorite episodes from the Youth Ministry Podcast! Tune in to other episodes on our website and make sure to subscribe on your favorite podcast player.