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We are willing to open our home in Chageen to young men
and women who are serious about becoming missionaries, but who want to
experience firsthand some of what such a life would entail before
committing themselves to a career of missionary work.
The minimum practical time period is 4 weeks, and the
maximum length is about 2 months. (If you know French, you can stay as
long as you like). We ask that you make application and be
accepted by the short term program of the Evangelical
Alliance Mission (TEAM). We will correspond with TEAM to make sure
this a good fit for you. Airfare being what it is, the typical cost of
such a trip is over $6000. TEAM will work out a budget with you, but you
will have to raise the funds for the trip yourself.
Due to the fact that no-one in Chageen speaks English,
some knowledge of French is helpful. This is because a big part of your
experience will be sitting with a Kwong language helper, and French will
be your only common language. Even a couple years of High School French is
better than nothing.
Over the past several years, we have hosted several young
people for such experiences and we have developed the following program of
activities to give you a well rounded experience of missionary life and
help you appreciate in a small way what a life-time of missionary service
might be like. This program will be adapted as circumstances and your
special interests require.
missionary’s effectiveness is significantly dependant on your
ability to communicate in the local language, so you will spend 2
hours, M-F working on learning Kwong. We will furnish you with a
language helper, and will spend time with you ourselves. We realize
that you will probably never use Kwong again, but in this exercise you will experience
one of the most defining aspects of missionary life - learning a language
and a culture outside a classroom.
missionary life is one of learning to live in an extended community,
so at least once each day, you will walk the length of the village,
practice the Kwong you are learning, and build relationships.
missionary is often called upon to eat native food, so depending on
the length of your stay, you will “eat
out” at least two or three times in Chadian homes – first with Mark, then
missionary is often called upon to live in native conditions, so near
the end of your time with us, you will live on your own with a Kwong
family 3 miles from our home for at least 36 hours.
missionary swims in a cultural sea, so you will learn at least one
uniquely Kwong cultural skill – playing Kwong checkers, weaving a
grass seko, making rope, etc.
missionary is often called upon to do brainless “non-ministry”
kinds of things like painting walls, so you will help the Vanderkoois
do these things and make their list of such tasks shorter.
missionary enterprise is always conducted in collaboration with any
and every true believer in the vicinity, so you will attend every
need to provision themselves in whatever way possible, so each Tuesday
you will spend an hour or two at the Chageen market and make some
missionary needs to be intentional about his ministry, so you will
keep a daily journal of your observations of Kwong life and customs,
as well as your observations of our ministry to them.
short term missionary needs to maximize his exposure to missions, so
you will restrict your reading material to missionary biographies
and/or missionary theology. No movies or internet (other
than basic email) will be
missionary needs to have a spirit of enquiry, so you will therefore
come to dinner each evening with at least one question for us about
the Kwong people, and one question for us regarding our ministry to
A missionary life revolves around relationships, so you
will build at least two good
friendships during your time with us.
missionary life is a life of prayer, so you will join us on MWF from
6:00 to 6:30 pm as we pray for the Kwong people during the radio
will do our best to ensure that you stay safe and healthy. We will
expose you to our work as translators, the children’s ministry, the
medical work, and the radio ministry.