We are delighted with your desire to serve God through missions! In our experience, preparation is a key ingredient for those going to the mission field. Our commitment to God, to you, your team, and your sending churches and supporters is to help you be as prepared as possible before going to the field. As part of this process, we believe there are several areas of competency that need to be addressed:
Spiritual/emotional preparation includes the development of spiritual disciplines, a discernment of God’s calling, and confirmation from mentors who are important to you. It also includes an evaluation from those familiar with missions regarding emotional readiness.
Interpersonal preparation is focused on working with others on the team and includes a team profile, an interpersonal relations workshop, and team-building activities.
Spiritual and cultural preparation involves training in Bible, missions, church planting, language acquisition, and the history and culture of the mission destination.
Experiential preparation includes securing a sponsoring church, raising funds, obtaining travel documents, surveying the mission destination, and gaining experience in working with a church.
On-field preparation involves settling into the mission destination, starting intensive language study, beginning cultural adaptation, preparing teaching materials, and developing relationships with nationals.
The following form is part of the first competency mentioned above and begins the missions preparation process. It is an extensive form and asks a lot of personal questions. You may have your own questions, so we have tried to anticipate some of them below:
Who will have access to the information on this form? We maintain strict confidentiality, yet there are several people who may use this form as a means of evaluating readiness. At GCM this includes the Executive Director, the Director of Missionary Care, and other staff directors as appropriate. Information on this form will not be shared with supporting churches or others who express interest in your ministry without your written permission.
How will we use this information? This form is used as an initial tool to evaluate readiness to go to a mission field. We look for strengths that will help you and the team to thrive on the field, as well as areas of growth that may be important for you to address in your time of preparation.
Will information on this form be used to make a decision about whether I can go to the field? In the majority of cases, information on this form confirms an applicant’s readiness to prepare for the mission field and yields valuable information to assist that process. At times there may be information that raises potential concerns. In these cases, we may make some suggestions about particular areas to work on in your training or, occasionally, we may recommend that you spend more time in preparation for mission work before making plans to move to a mission field. In any event, we encourage you to be honest in your responses, as we have found this to be best for applicants, their team members, and the good of the Kingdom.
Once again, we are excited by your desire to serve God on the mission field. We look forward to being your partner in this endeavor. Our goal is to be a resource for you at each step along the way as you prepare to glorify God in Latin America.
Great Cities Missions Executive Director