The Holistic Formation of Missionaries

“Crosscultural service is a crucible that tests one’s character, probes one’s spirituality and stretches one’s ministry skills, while also demanding a wide range of background knowledge.”

Antonio Berni (Rosario, 1905 - Buenos Aires, 1981)

Antonio Berni (Rosario, 1905 – Buenos Aires, 1981)

The Latin American Missions Studies Program focuses on three areas of vital formation of the students and aspiring missionaries: knowing, being and doing.

To know: Knowledge is an important part of preparing missionaries for service. We must ask questions like: Who am I serving? What are their deep beliefs and convictions? How do they understand the world? How do they understand themselves? What do they think about Jesus?

To be: Theology is not only a conversation about God – it is a path to also discover who we are in Christ. Along with prayer, meditation on God’s Word and meaningful participation in Christ’s body, students will be encouraged to understand themselves and their mission in the light of who Jesus is today.

To do: Ministry flows out of the person and work of Jesus Christ. We cannot share the Good News of Jesus Christ in a way that denies the internal logic of that message. We will explore what it means to share the Good News of God’s redemptive work in Jesus in Latin America.

LAMSP emphasizes these three important areas of formation because a holistic comprehension of mission work is what foments a strong witness to the truth of the Gospel. Steve Hoke highlights the importance of an integral spirituality:

“Ministry (doing) flows out of being. Crosscultural servanthood arises out of your very identity in Christ. . . . The critical factor will always be a vibrant spirituality empowered by the presence and power of the Holy Spirit. No matter how well a missionary may be trained, if the presence of the Holy Spirit is not in that person’s life, she or he will just be going through the motions.”

Will you consider exploring with us what it means to serve God and others in Latin America?

Steve Hoke, “The Missionary Needed Today”., in Steve Hoke and Bill Taylor., Global mission Handbook: A Guide for Crosscultural Service. (Downer’s Grove, IL: IVP Books., 2009)., 39-40.

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