Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Local Internship with a Global Impact

QUESTION: What do Guatemala, Haiti, India, Iraq, Mali, South Sudan, and Thailand have in common?
ANSWER: Missionary Kids (MKs) from each of these countries have attended a debriefing program where I have been their teacher. 
Through my internship from August-December at Mission Training International (MTI) I’ve been part of a team which has ministered to 80 children, from families serving in 35 different countries. Cross-cultural missionaries from 53 different organizations have entrusted MTI with their debriefing during the last 4 months. Although located in Colorado, I’m having a global impact doing the ministry of developing and equipping cross-cultural messengers of the gospel for effectiveness, endurance and spiritual vitality.

Ministry in Japan
As a Converge Worldwide missionary in Japan from 1998-2000 and 2007-2016, I studied the Japanese language and worked to educate Japanese, international and missionary children in a private Christian school. Outside of the classroom I also had opportunities to mentor students, participate in a Japanese church and build relationships in my neighborhood. During my time in Japan I saw the impact that cross-cultural ministry had on missionary families and desired to learn more about how to care for missionary kids.
Time of Transition
In June 2015 I completed my educational ministry contract at Kansai Christian School.  During my home assignment, with the assistance of Converge Worldwide leadership, I pursued new opportunities in missionary kid care. Attending Missionary Kid Caregivers Consultation (MKCC) spring of 2016 introduced me to new opportunities in Asia, and around the world. Building on connections at MKCC and the pre-field training I had at Mission Training International in 2007, I pursued a fall internship at MTI in the area of missionary kid care. In July 2016 I returned to Japan for two weeks to pack my belongings and say good-byes to students, friends, and co-workers.
MTI Internship
Lori As a Converge missionary seconded to MTI for an internship August-December 2016, I am learning more about the needs of missionary kids in the orientation and debriefing process. Each month I have taught a new group of missionary kids (ages 4-12) who are transitioning from the mission field to North America, some are on home assignment/furlough, some are between assignments, some are returning permanently.  My primary role as a trainer is to provide a safe and understanding environment where MKs can process their story and connect with other MKs who have gone through similar situations. In October my role has expanded to include parent coaching, where I have the opportunity to meet with missionary parents as they debrief their experience as parents overseas and the impact on the hearts of family members.

During my internship I’ve found that working at MTI utilizes my spiritual gifts, reflects my passion for missionary kid care, utilizes my teaching abilities, allows my personality to show through and capitalizes on the experiences I’ve been given. I’m praying about how God would have me apply the learning and experience for future ministry. 
With your partnership during this internship, we are impacting the effectiveness, endurance, and personal vitality of missionary families around the globe.  Please continue to pray for this ministry and for me as I seek God’s guidance for next steps to take when this internship ends in December. 
Serving with joy,
Lori Harms
DAR CHIPs Trainers
MTI's Debriefing and Renewal Children's Intercultural Program trainers,
new friends who I've been blessed to work with for the last 3 months.

1. Pray for a moldable spirit in my MTI Internship, able to understand and apply the learning. 

2. Pray for the Debriefing and Renewal Team Nov. 6-11.  For connections among the staff, adults, and children, for a safe place to share their story and journey with God. 

3. Praise for my housing situation. Pray that I would be a blessing to my housemate

4. Pray for wisdom to discern God's vision for future ministry steps as the internship finishes in December. 

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