The missionary sending model outlines our process for sending missionaries. The first two steps, Calling and Application, are all about discerning your call. One way you can do this is by having conversations with your pastor, Nazarene Missions International (NMI) president, and other trusted mentors. They will be able to encourage you through this process.
The next step is to continue your Exploration of your call as you develop skills that will help you both as a follower of Jesus and as a missionary. This stage involves interviewing with your local church board as an important step toward affirming your call to missions.
Once we have received your local church’s affirmative recommendation, you will move on to Orientation. This includes attending Explore, a dynamic and engaging event led by experts who will help you learn, grow, and discover how you might serve. After the event, we will provide you with a personalized plan for you to move forward toward missionary service.
The length of time it takes to send a missionary varies greatly from person to person. For some, the process takes less than a year; for others it takes much longer. There are several factors that go into sending an individual or couple as missionaries, including calling, gifts, development, experience, and training. The timeline can also be affected by the type of needs on the field and their urgency. For example, if a candidate’s skills match an urgent need on the field, they may go through the process rather quickly. On the other hand, particularly for people called to long-term service, development and training may be a priority and can take several years.
Nazarene Missions equips each missionary according to his or her specific needs. Training varies based on your desired length of service and given assignment. We require all missionaries, regardless of length of service, to attend an Explore event. This event provides you with cross-cultural insights, as well as an opportunity to meet our staff. Additional role-specific training will be provided once you are placed in an assignment and before you are deployed.
While debt is certainly a concern, there is hope. We encourage you to do all that you can to reduce your debt before you are assigned. However, we also recognize that in many contexts, debt is a reality we face. We will help you consider solutions that will enable you to serve as soon as possible.
Nazarene Missions places a high value on the contribution of the missionary family. Serving together can be an example in your community, and your children may be the avenue God uses to build relationships and ministry opportunities.
We understand each child has unique needs in growing up on the mission field. We will endeavor to support, advocate for, and assist them — and you as parents — in their healthy development and as they become adults and re-enter their heritage culture. With this in mind, we take an intentional role through our efforts on and off the field, including our Nazarene Rendezvous Re-Entry Program <Rendezvousmk.org>.
While a Nazarene missionary must be 18 years of age to serve in their own assignment, there are many opportunities for service before that time, including Work & Witness and other group experiences.
The skills needed for missionary service vary greatly based on context and length of service, but Nazarene Missions commonly encourages either trade or educational development in order to increase a missionary’s effectiveness.
Throughout our application process, we assess health history and have a medical committee whose goal is to make sure you could be effective and cared for appropriately. However, there are health concerns that could hinder someone from serving as a missionary.
Nazarene Missions is made possible through the collective efforts of Nazarenes around the world. Local churches are invited to participate fully, which includes World Evangelism giving. If a local church desires to send a new missionary but is not fully participating in WEF, Nazarene Missions will encourage their participation to enable them to send missionaries through our global network.
Nazarene Missions will provide a Send Me Guide for your local church. This document gives in-depth information about sending missionaries and provides churches with the appropriate tools to engage people in missions. The guide specifically discusses listening to your call to missions, preparing for service, and the process of serving in missions.
For additional information, visit Nazarene.org/SendMe or contact us at SendMe@nazarene.org or 913-577-2962.