Missions 101: Tips on Volunteering Abroad

“When we enter new cultures, we become keenly aware of the fact that other people live differently.  At first we see the difference in dress, food, language, and behavior.  Then we learn that there are profound differences in beliefs, feelings and values.  Finally, we begin to realize that there are fundamental differences in worldviews.  People in different cultures do not live in the same world with different labels attached to it, but in radically different worlds.” Paul Hiebert

In this Breakout Session from the 2018 M3 Conference, Dr. Tom Byrd addresses the differences we will face when entering new cultures to serve. He will provide tips for preparing for both short and long-term missions as well as advice on pitfalls to avoid. This session will be helpful for those planning their first mission trip as well as experienced missionaries. The talk will conclude with several helpful resources for volunteering abroad.

Tom Byrd, MD, has been a practicing physician for over 22 years and is Director of Hospital Medicine at Brownwood Regional Medical Center. He has been active in missions work in Burundi (Africa) for a number of years and has worked in several clinics in rural Burundi. He is currently on the Board of Directors for “The Cries Of A Child”, a Christian NGO based in Bukeye Burundi and serves as the Clinical Consultant for The Cornerstone Clinic in Bukeye. He has been active in clinic expansion, development and in establishing a program for malnutrition for the clinic.

Click here to learn more about the programs and projects of The Cries of a Child in Burundi.

It is God Calling You

“When Jesus calls you, like human resource managers, He always adds, ‘and other duties as assigned…’” quips Dr. Martin Nkundeki in his Plenary Session at the 2018 M3 Conference.

Christians around the world come face to face with people in difficult situations. Many times we may walk away, offer a hand and go on, or we may think it’s for someone else, some other group, or for the government to take care of, but when, like Moses, we stop to look more closely at the situation, we see “God in the burning bush.” We see more, feel more and realize we can do more.

In this session, Dr. Nkundeki, the Medical Director at Wentz Medical Center, shares his story. He is a Ugandan doctor at a mission hospital in the outskirts of Kampala, Uganda’s capital. He will discuss how being involved in his community led to a decade long relationship with nearby slum communities, and how working with them to create solutions to their problems, including using a medical outreach team of Village Health Volunteers to spread health information, has changed lifestyles and brought hope. He will share about discerning the stirrings and opportunities, and recognizing it is God calling you.

God needs you as a conduit of His grace, an ambassador of His dream, to bring hope and courage, and an exodus of His people to a higher quality of life.

Click here to learn more about the work of Wentz Medical Center.

Global Healthcare Missions: An Unpresented Opportunity to Impact the World

“Healthcare professionals can go where others can’t go…,” says Rick Allen, President and CEO of MedSend.  Not since the days of the Roman Empire has there been an opportunity to transform individuals, communities and nations through the use of healthcare missions. The delivery of healthcare allows access to areas of the world where other forms of Christian witness are not permitted. New strategies and fresh approaches are required. This has opened up opportunity for a new generation of thought, leadership and planning. In this Breakout Session from the 2018 M3 Conference, Mr. Allen will discuss the past, present and future of global healthcare missions.

Click here to learn more about Rick Allen and the work of MedSend. 

Serving God with Open Hands

“I didn’t really have a vision for what God was doing globally. Life was safe. When you live safe, you don’t really have an urgency and dependency to see God in a bigger way…It’s so easy to make comfort an idol. So, I said a new prayer, ‘God, break my heart for what breaks Your heart…’”

Like the many who we honor today on Memorial Day, who went to the tough and unsafe places to help others and gave their lives for a greater cause, that prayer has led Kelly Sites, RN, across the globe serving those who have suffered from natural disasters, war, and refugee crises. In this Plenary Session from the 2018 M3 Conference, Kelly shares how often times we hold those we love, our passions, goals, dreams and skills, our future, our professions, and serving God, with clenched fists. We want to maintain control and keep a firm grip on it all. Learn how serving God with open hands brings freedom and a knowing of Who He is on a deeper level.