Most of you are aware that Trinity Bible Church is sending a 14-member short-term missions team to Romania this summer to support the ministry of Cornel and Karen Bucur, our missionary partners for many years. The team will be planning and leading outreach ministries to children both in a Romani ("gypsy") village and in an orphanage in the city of Oradea. (Read more about the project here.)
Phil shared from his experience as an MK about the kind of life change that can happen through short-term missions trips on several different levels:
- The local people in the host country can be impacted in surprising ways. Sometimes God's word breaks through when it comes through fresh voices with new faces.
- A visiting team can provide needed encouragement, a refreshing spiritual and emotional boost to the long-term missionaries slogging it out on the field.
- A missions trip can be life-changing for the short-termers themselves, as they return with an enhanced grasp of God's heart for the world.
- Those who support the project from back at home can share in the blessing and in the personal growth without ever getting on an airplane themselves.
Phil challenged the church family to do two things in relation to the Romania team. First, he asked everyone to commit ourselves to pray for the team at least twice a week from now until the end of the project in July, noting that if enough of us were to take that on, it would provide almost non-stop prayer coverage as the team works to prepare for the project and carry on their ministry in Romania this summer.
Second, Phil asked us all to pray about how God may be leading us to give to financially support the project. The total expenses for the trip will be around $40,000 (around $2800 each), of which the team has already committed to cover a little over half. The remainder will need to come through donations. We don't want anyone to give out of guilt or because of some sense of pressure, but we would like everyone to pray about it and see where God may lead. Any gifts for the trip can be made through the offerings with "Romania" in the memo or in an attached note.