Love God. Love people. Nothing else matters.
Mission Year is a year long program where Christian young people live in an urban neighborhood volunteering, worshiping, and loving their neighbors.It’s an opportunity for anyone 18-29, single or married, to spend a year following Jesus’ command to “Love the Lord your God, and love your neighbor as yourself.” By partnering with a local church, volunteering at a service site, and spending time with neighbors, Mission Year Team Members effectively impact their communities while catching a deeper vision for what the Kingdom of God is like.
Mission Year Day-to-Day
Our focus each day is loving God and loving people. But you may be wondering what that looks like exactly. Our Team Members engage in their home and in the community through several concrete ways:
Living in Christian community includes much more than sharing a room and passing each other occasionally on the way to the kitchen. We want to know others and to belong and be known in a family. We want to intentionally put into practice the “one anothers” of Scripture: praying for one another, encouraging one another, submitting to one another, serving one another. You will participate in morning devotions, family times, team dinners, and book discussions, pursuing the best possible relationship with each teammate.
After School Programs. Law Centers. Health Clinics. Homeless Shelters. Art Centers. Community Development Organizations. Schools. Flag Football Leagues. Churches. As a Mission Year team member, you will spend four days a week volunteering with a local community organization.
Your aim is to serve the organization where you’re working, encourage your co-workers, and serve the people there to the best of their ability. Mission Year has partner organizations in the neighborhoods that have invited us to join their mission. Community leaders guide team members as they recognize issues of justice that affect their neighbors and learn creative solutions from seasoned experts. Check out some of this year’s sites.
Growth in personal discipleship is one of our foremost desires, rivaled only by our passion with blessing our neighbors in significant and lasting ways. Simply stated, every aspect of Mission Year, in one way or another, is intended to help Team Members develop as followers of Jesus. From the beginning of orientation all the way through the end of the closing retreat, our goal is to give Team Members a genuine opportunity to better understand themselves and the world around them and to draw closer to God by loving some of his most precious people.
You will begin each day with time set aside for household devotions and prayer. Your City Director will meet individually with you on a regular basis to provide a listening ear and committed mentorship. We also encourage individual pursuit of your relationship with God through taking advantage of weekly Sabbath days and our biweekly all-city worship and teaching gatherings.
Our perspective of neighborhood outreach simply means that Team Members are intentionally building relationships with the desire of drawing neighbors closer to where God would have them be. Team Members connect with people through hospitality dinners, games of basketball, listing to prayer requests, birthday parties, Bible studies and a whole bunch of other daily interactions that lead to lasting relationships. Meaningful friendships develop over time, and our Team Members find themselves deeply involved with their neighbors’ lives, helping to meet all kinds of practical needs and sharing their faith in a very natural way.
Mission Year supports the work of the local church in the neighborhoods where we serve. Therefore, we connect each team to a church in their community that loves God, the Bible, and people. Team Members engage in Sunday morning service and seek out a specific ministry where they can make a contribution within that church. They might join a weekly bible study, drama ministry, or prison outreach. While Team Members may or may not feel entirely at home in their church, their aim is to understand, appreciate, and encourage their brothers and sisters. You will become part of God’s family in your new community and establish a spiritual home base from which your team can reach out to your neighbors as followers of Jesus.
Education and Training
The Mission Year curriculum brings together a diverse collection of books and articles that our Team Members read and discuss on a weekly basis throughout the year. The goal of our curriculum is to expose our Team Members to a variety of perspectives on a variety of subjects, ranging from interpersonal relationships to social justice to spiritual growth. Mission Year staff also organize practical trainings biweekly throughout the year. Guest speakers, taped messages, and documentaries focus on topics, such as working with the elderly, homelessness and housing, immigration, and boundaries with children, to name a few. Of course, the year begins with an intensive nationwide orientation followed by another week of local orientation. These sessions cover topics like living in multicultural environments, safety, and using public transportation. We work diligently to make sure you are prepared and equipped to serve well in the city.
Every year, we plan visit weekends in our neighborhoods. We’d love to have you come join us and see for yourself what your Mission Year could look like. Our dates don’t work for you? We’ll gladly arrange a visit for you anytime! Please click here for more information.
You know who you are. This one page has told you everything you need to know about Mission Year and you already feel drawn to this experience. Don’t let a moment pass. Start your application!