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.