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MTW Makes Cross-cultural Training Available for Lay Leaders

By Jud Lamos, Feb 17, 2016

CCMI (Cross-cultural Ministry Internship) has been training MTW missionaries for over 15 years. You don't remember that? Maybe because it used to be called pre-field training! In keeping with its new name, CCMI doesn't just train people before they go to the field.

Increasingly PCA members who want to lead short-term teams, who might consider long-term missions in the future or want to learn about cross-cultural ministry in the U.S. are attending this training. Not only does it afford them an opportunity to learn, it affords them an opportunity to learn alongside missionaries they actually support.

Offered twice a year in Belgium, CCMI training focuses on cross-cultural adaptation, language-learning principles, team dynamics, and church-planting methodology. Classroom instruction is interspersed with peer-to-peer learning in small groups. Field-based ministry is focused on churches in Brussels that worship in Armenian, Dutch, Farsi, French, Turkish, as well as English.

The training location, the Zav Center, is owned and run by Operation Mobilization (OM). A five-minute drive from the Brussels National Airport and a 30-minute ride by train from city center this converted leather factory has the look and feel of a European hostel. Unlike a hostel, however, everyone has their own rooms. Meals and laundry are provided as well—and OM staff shuttle guests to and from the airport when they arrive and leave.

Harry Wilson is a missions committee member at Trinity Presbyterian Church (PCA) in Providence, R.I. In January 2016 he attended CCMI. When asked about his experience, Harry responded: "I learned to live in community, real community. I learned about MTW's care for its missionaries, which is outstanding. I attended an Iranian church—an experience I never expected to have. I believe I learned how to facilitate a cross-cultural ministry at home in the U.S. and how to lead a short-term team overseas. This has been a very significant time for me."

Leaning on the skills and experience of present and former missionaries, participants work through real and simulated situations that prepare them for life as global citizens. Ethnographic research, personal journaling, spiritual mentoring, and "just-in-time coaching" provide opportunities for learning ministry skills alongside personal and spiritual development.

CCMI provides an intensive cross-cultural missions training experience in the heart of Europe that lasts four weeks. Belgium is the crossroads for European culture, European government, and international business. It is also a crossroads for immigrant groups who come from all over the globe looking for a home in the West.

This kind of training alongside such a unique overseas experience, allows missionaries and lay leaders to learn about global ministry in an atmosphere that is hard to replicate in any other way. MTW's Global Training and Development Team makes every effort to ensure that missionaries and lay leaders are ready for the cultural, linguistic and ministerial challenges that will face them overseas and at home.

Come experience it with us. Come learn about God's world and your place in it. What a difference a month can make.

To learn more visit gtdtraining.org or contact [email protected]

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Pray for our training staff as they address challenges of cross-cultural ministry: training for new missionaries, leadership development, team building seminars, and community development training. 

Pray that the global church, including the PCA in the U.S., would make evangelism a priority, and share the truth with those around them. 

Pray that God would draw many PCA church members, pastors, students, and those passionate about global missions to the GMC conference in November.

Give thanks and pray for a couple in Japan who recently came to faith as they faced the last days of the husband's life.

Pray for those in Turkey continuing to rebuild from last year's earthquake, and for continuation of the spiritual growth seen as a result.

Pray for the pastors/national partners ministering in the Ukrainian church amid the ongoing war. Pray too for MTW missionaries who serve the church both in-country and from afar.

Pray for missionary women seeking to juggle ministry and family life in a cross-cultural setting.

Pray for Freedom Ministries arm of MTW's work in Cambodia, providing a home for girls and young women rescued from trafficking. Pray that the girls who don't yet know Christ come to know Him.

Pray for God's grace for missionaries as they seek to be an example of love and hospitality to their neighbors while facing ongoing stressors of life.

Pray that missionaries would feel cared for while on the field. Pray, too, for our Member Care Department staff as they seek to care for missionaries well.

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