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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 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.

Pray for God's work among the nations in South Korea through MTW's Diaspora Ministry.

Please pray for Haiti, and particularly for the safety of our ministry partners in Gonaives as they continue to labor patiently with the people.

Pray that believers in Poland would get theological materials they need in their heart language through a new publishing ministry. 

Pray for MTW's ministry in Haiti in the midst of ongoing gang violence and ongoing instability.

Pray for the people of Ukraine including the pastors, elders, and church members we work with. Pray that the war would end, and that God would use this crisis to draw Ukrainians to Himself. 

Pray for the Ethiopia ACT project, which cares for the sick and vulnerable in Addis Ababa. Pray for staff and for participants.

Pray for the Island to Island partnership bringing together Pacific Islands nations for a coordinated gospel effort. Pray for churches in Vanuatu, Fiji, Samoa, Tonga, and the Cook Islands. 

Pray that as we engage people globally with cultural sensitivity, that they would be open to relationships with MTW missionaries and, more importantly, open to the truth of the gospel.

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