End Of Training New Missionaries In Belgium

A month ago Erin and Mike started the process of training new MTW missionaries in the Cross-Cultural Missions Intensive in Belgium. Six-days a week we helped to train 15 new missionaries going to nine different countries. The training was a combination of classroom learning and field exercises. The new missionaries took advantage of the massive amount of cultural diversity in Brussels. They took to the streets to practice evangelism, studying cultures, serving the poor, and worshiped in a foreign context.

The training took lots of personnel to help prepare the 19 new missionaries. There were nine staffers (Erin and Mike included), six outside presenters, and six amazing interns.

This training, which takes place every six months, has been tweaked and amended over the years, but it is very similar to the month-long training our family did in New York City back in 2007. The training is designed to be the final training an MTW missionary receives before heading to the field. In fact, several of the new missionaries left straight from CCMI to their field of service.

In addition to working with all the missionaries and teaching lessons, Mike and Erin served as coaches to seven individual missionaries. With each missionary, we had several intimate and honest conversations. We tried to help them by providing insight from our 10-years of missions failures and successes.

This will be our final visit to Belgium to participate in the CCMI training as coaches. Part of our new mandate in organizing the West Coast Hub will be to replicate this month-long training and other MTW trainings on the West Coast. We look forward to continuing to training future missionaries in our new capacity.

About Mike

Mike, 49, grew up in California and spent 38 years of his life there. He received an undergraduate degree in Political Science, graduated from Reformed Theological Seminary and is pursuing a doctorate from Fuller Theological Seminary. Before accepting God’s call to fulltime missions, Mike worked in the California State Senate for 12 years. He became a Christian at the age of 20.

Mike was a Ruling Elder at Soaring Oaks Presbyterian Church(PCA) for seven years. While at Soaring Oaks, Mike served as the Director of the High School Youth Group, Sunday school teacher, and instructor of evangelism.

His cross-cultural missions experience includes five short term trips to Mexico, Belize, Guatemala and Peru (Lima and Cusco) through Mission to the World (MTW). He has volunteered with World Relief by teaching and counseling international refugees. Mike has also attended cross-cultural church planting conferences in New York and Orlando and completed the Perspectives course on the World Christian Movement.

He attended Bible Study Fellowship for two years. He is a certified instructor through Evangelism Explosion and is a certified trainer of the Darkness to Light child sexual abuse prevention program. He completed MTW‘s Disaster Response Training. Mike is an experienced speaker and author. Over 70 of Mike’s articles on missions have been published and he has written three books. He is a trained and experienced mentor, discipler, leader and a passionate teacher of small groups and Bible studies.

Mike received an undergraduate degree in Political Science, graduated from Reformed Theological Seminary and is currently pursuing a doctorate from Fuller Theological Seminary. Before accepting God’s call to fulltime missions, Mike was a Ruling Elder, Youth Group Leader, adult Sunday school teacher and evangelism instructor at Soaring Oaks Presbyterian Church in Elk Grove, CA. Mike is an experienced speaker and author. Over 70 of Mike’s articles on missions have been published and he has written two books. He is a trained and experienced mentor, discipler, leader and a passionate teacher of small groups and Bible studies.

From 2007 to 2017 Mike served as a fulltime missionary for MTW. Mike served as Team Leader, Church Planter, and Seminary Professor. Mike and his wife Erin served in Honduras in Central America and Equatorial Guinea in Central Africa. Mike currently serves as the Director of the MTW West Coast Hub where he trains and mentors new missionaries from CA, AZ, & NV. Mike is also busy writing his next book.

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