First Aid for Short-term Missionaries

Celia Munson, the training coordinator for Bukal Life Care & Counseling Center led Basic First Aid and Health for Short-term Missionaries. This was done with STMers tied to “Asia Vision Short-Term Missions”. Typically, we help with AVSTM in a couple of training seminars. These are Basic first aid, and member care issues in missions.


November 20 Activities

This was a busy day for us.

A. We had a training session at CRC Hall in Baguio with the CBCP Center for Women and Children. The topic: “Basic Skills and Theory of Pastoral Counseling and Psychotherapy”. 43 attended from over 20 organizations, including DSWD, Couples for Christ, and the Soroptomist Club. Training was led by Rev. Joel Aguirre, BLCCC Executive Director.

B. On the same day, had training workshop on “Church-based Member Care for Missionaries”. This was held at Philippine Baptist Theological Seminary. This is part of Asia Vision-STM’s Leadership Development Program. This is our 2nd year of involvement in their program. Over 40 attended. Celia Munson (BLCCC Director of Training) was the trainer, with a bit of help from her husband Bob (BLCCC Administrator).

Web Connections

Reminder for our related sites.

1. This is our main website. I includes other ministries that are part of our vision but does not fit into the more narrow understanding of pastoral care and counseling.

2. Our Facebook site. This probably gets updated the most frequently.

3. This was set up by Bob Munson (our administrator) to discuss some various topics within the context of missions and Christian ministry.

AVSTM Leadership Development Program

Asia Vision Short Term Mission (AVSTM) completed their 4 week training, at its headquarters on the grounds of Philippine Baptist Theological Seminary. They had close to 30 students involved in it… focused on training up Filipino and International missionaries.

Celia teaching at AVSTM LDP

AVSTM LDP Group Photo

Bob and Celia Munson (of Bukal Life) had the priviledge in helping with the Training. Celia taught on Missionary Member Care, while Bob taught Contemporary Issues in Missions. It was a great time and we hope the students gained from the experience.

Bob and Celia will be talking on Missionary Member Care at the Morning Service of Shalom Christian Church (Baguio City) on January 17th.

The AVSTM blogsite can be accessed in the weblinks on the right.

Comments on Relief and Developmnet

Ministry in a community involves two groups, hosts and outsiders, who provide care for a third group, the recipients. The hosts are people or groups in a community who are committed to serving God and the community. Outsiders are, not surprisingly, people from outside the community. They may be short-term missionaries, financial supporters, mobilizers, and so forth. Recipients are people and groups in the community to be served.
Hosts provide at least two very important ingredients to the partnership for ministry:
· Cultural Awareness/Sensitivity
· Long-term Presence

Outsiders provide two ingredients as well:
· Material/Financial Resources
· Special Skills

Each group lacks the others’ strengths. A failure of either group to provide these ingredients leads to a partnership that is one-sided, or ineffective.

The partnership between hosts and outsiders needs to be founded on common philosophy of ministry and common goals, maintained by transparent communication. With this foundation, the two groups must work together to develop a mutual strategy and plan. Any break-down or lopsidedness in this work will lead to problems in the planning and execution of the mission.

The ministry to the recipient should be wholistic. That is, it should focus on the total person and the total community. Individualistic missions will not transform a community. Focusing on only one area (physical, economic, spiritual, educational, etc.) will not transform a community.

Post-ministry tasks must include evaluation of all aspects of the work, and planned follow-up. Seeds planted will not grow well unless they are properly tended. Follow-up work will not improve unless all parties learn from the past. Follow-up is normally the responsibility of the host, but evaluation is important for all.

The Relief Cycle as shown in the diagram shows the role of the outsider as one who may periodically come in to provide skills and resources and then leave. The Development Cycle as shown in the diagram shows the role of the Host, living in the community and continuing in the tending process of long-term ministry.

Early in ministry work, the greater emphasis may be on relief. However, with material and skills transfer, the necessity of the skills and resources of outsiders should reduce, and the emphasis should move towards the development cycle. Progress does not occur if ministry stays rooted mostly in the relief cycle. That is why training is so important. That being said, in any community it is good if both cycles always exist. Why? There are no perfectly self-sufficient communities. We all are interdependent. Everyone lacks something that someone else could help meet. And no one is so impoverished that they have nothing to offer another.

(From research in Dissertation “Strategic Use of Medical Mission Events for Long-term Church Outreach in the Ilocos Region” by Bob Munson.)

Double Vortex Model of Ministry