Praying Around the World

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A couple of years ago Pastor Jon De Bruyn approached Christian Reformed World Missions with a proposal to jointly sponsor prayer trips to various mission sites around the world. We are all familiar with trips that involve physical labor or handing out tracts. More recently a number of organizations have done trips that focus on discovery or learning about a place, its people, and the ministry going on there. But a prayer mission trip was new to many. What would that look like? 

I decided to go on the first in the series, a trip to Haiti in November 2009, pre-earthquake. It was a remarkable experience in many ways. It certainly involved learning, as we visited various ministry sites and met with the Haitian partners of the CRC team in that country. And there were some very meaningful times of prayer. Still I wondered — how did the hosts feel about this visit?

I surveyed the missionaries and asked what they and their partners thought. Each one was enthusiastic about the significance of this ministry. They felt encouraged and supported. Several pointed to the trip as a way of deepening the character of their relationship with their partners. Pastor Bill Tuininga went on a recent trip to Nicaragua. He also writes glowingly of the experience in this article. If you have ever had a desire to visit a mission field while leaving your hammer at home, this could be a great way to do it. The end of Bill's article has an email address for further information.

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Steve, This is exactly the concept behind STM for our children. The average income in the CRC is some where around 65000k a year. We can afford to do both kind of missions. Our first ministry is to our children so they can become missionaries or support the missionaries. If you talk to my chilren or the prison ministry personal where they went the same kind of reactions that you describe in your article happen to the Glory of God. Steve , I'm not against the need for effective long term missions. But I do see a good reason for effective STM also. They are all part of us doing God's kingdom work.

I remain open to any suggestions as long as they do not envolve removing a good ministry. Everything can be improved including ineffective STM that do occur. I also struggle with some of the references you link too. Why don't you get some comments in here from the people where the missions are being performed such as the local contact or one of the indigenious converts. I would love to hear what they think in a direct fashion.

Thanks

Ken