Posted by: jacobgillard | January 6, 2011

Short-Term Mission: Noodle This!

It’s good to keep up on the mission literature.  I was reading an article* that my boss wrote and a couple sentences jumped out at me.

In the introduction he states:

Church bodies in non-western lands…tend to witness to their faith through close and long-term relationships rather than short-term mission efforts.

The first section of the article is titled “Cultural boundary: barriers to one’s intention” and it includes this nugget:

African cultures tend to be highly hospitable…However, Africans tend not to get involved in problems which are distant…Western cultures are just the opposite.  North Americans are charitable and generous when presented with distant needs.  However, our hospitality is limited.  We prefer visitors (even relatives) for short stays.  The differing worldviews can cause misunderstanding.  Westerners may misread the gracious hospitality of African hosts as genuine acceptance.  Africans may misread the charitableness of westerners as a closer relationship than intended.

* “Short-term Mission: A Reflection” by Dr. Mike Rodewald.  The article appears on pages 48-55 in “Missio Apostolica” Volume XVIII, No 1 (Issue 35) May 2010.  “Missio Apostolica” is the journal of the Lutheran Society for Missiology.  The majority of the articles in the issue touch upon short-term mission efforts.   Check it out!

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: