​"I really hate ultimate frisbee, but …"

July 7 2017

Chelsea Long, a junior at the University of Missouri Columbia, is passionate about telling people's stories. With an emphasis in strategic communication and a love of theater, her special set of skills reveal a young woman who strives to share everyone's unique story. So it's no surprise that she decided to serve in the Communications and Marketing Department this summer with One Mission Society.

Chelsea grew up in a Christian home with a family of strong believers. She was plugged into church the minute she was born, she jokes, but when she was old enough to finally join the youth group, the beloved youth pastor left. Unfortunately, the new youth pastor focused more on growing numbers than growing the faith of the people [who] had been there." By her sophomore year in high school, Chelsea joined a new church and youth group where she happily connected with a great group of Christian friends. But, after several issues, the friend group dissolved only two years later, leaving Chelsea feeling isolated and alone, like she had no one to lean on or pour into her spiritual life.

When it came time to choose a university, Chelsea chose one that everyone warned was a huge party school, effectively causing her to worry about falling in with the wrong crowd of people. So, the minute she arrived on campus, she dedicated herself to finding a good group of Christian students. It just so happened that soon after her arrival, she was invited to play ultimate frisbee with a group of fellow Christians. Chelsea’s first thoughts were, “Yes, friends! Boo ultimate frisbee!” Despite the fact that she firmly hates ultimate frisbee, she went in order to invest in and cultivate relationships. She reflects that this group of friends has been instrumental in "building me up, strengthening my faith, and teaching me how to live out my faith, especially in a very secular school."

With the summer quickly approaching, Chelsea actively sought an internship that was either nonprofit or focused on ministry. This led her to accept a summer position with OMS, a decision she does not regret.

"OMS gives you great experience in your specific field of study, while also helping you build your faith while being surrounded by a great group of believers."


This is our fifth in a series of five blogs about our summer interns. We hope you enjoyed learning more about them. If you, or someone you know, is interested in an internship at OMS, email go@onemissionsociety.org.

Tags: summer internship, interns, communications, college intern, growing faith,

Finding Her Identity: Summer Intern Grows in Christ

June 30 2017

"I definitely knew about the Bible, grew up with it, [and] was familiar with it, but it wasn't until the end of high school that my faith became personal."

Sierra Steffen, a senior at Purdue University majoring in organizational leadership, is excited to figure out what it looks like to combine everyday work with personal spiritual growth while serving with the Communications and Marketing Department this summer.

Sierra grew up in a home that put God first, but it took her years to recognize that she wasn't fully putting her identity in Christ.

On the evening of her high school graduation, she found herself looking at her pictures, plaques, and trophies, everything she had put her identity into in high school, and she felt empty. She k new she needed to place her identity into something, or more appropriately someone, who was permanent. She counts herself fortunate that she grew up in a household where she knew that Jesus was the answer. Jesus was who her identity should be founded in, so it was on that night that she gave her life to the Lord.

When she felt God calling her to Purdue, she was surprised because it wasn't the type of school she had previously considered. But, God had a plan that involved getting plugged into a good youth group. She reflects on this calling with a laugh now because it has given her "A lot of opportunities to witness to people on campus."

The first summer after her freshman year, Sierra interned in a big city, and she hoped to do something similar after her sophomore year. She wanted to achieve bigger and better things, but she had to come to terms with the fact that God was calling her home for the summer. "God totally changed my heart about going home for the summer. He led me home and closed some doors to make it very clear that's where he wanted me. Looking back, it's so neat to see that he needed me home that summer."

Knowing that God's will mattered most, she fully relied on him while trying to figure out where to go and what to do for this current summer. "I really prayed that his will would be done, and that I would be where he wanted me." Accepting where that would be was hard, but "He definitely knows what's best, and he led me to One Mission Society."

And, with every creative meeting, deep conversation, and coffee break that makes you hold your stomach with laughter, she is reaffirmed of her decision to serve with OMS.

"You're part of the Great Commission here."

Tags: internship, marketing, summer, oms, spiritual growth, communications intern,

Doors Open at the Right Time: Summer Intern Relies on God

June 23 2017

"I had prayed for a long time that God would just open the right doors and shut the wrong ones. I prayed for God to put me in situations where I would have no other choice but to trust in him."

And that’s how God intervened in Maranda Grabbe's life and brought her to OMS as the Missionary Care intern for the summer. It’s clear to see that her passion for people was instilled into her heart by God the minute she was born. Having gone through her own trials and hardships over the years, she found herself wanting to pour into others who were going through similar things. Maranda shared how important it is to have someone to lean on because "it was very evident when I was lacking those people to cling to." It is for this reason that she is finishing a degree in Christian Counseling at Central Christian College of the Bible in Moberly, Missouri.

God recently revealed in her a passion for missions, for reaching the lost and the broken. Nearly a year ago, she and some friends were provided an opportunity to visit Greece on a mission trip. Maranda felt herself being called to this mission trip, but she had to acknowledge that she was struggling with various personal issues. She shared how contradictory her emotions were in these moments. She was deeply happy for her friends and the good work they would do, while equally disappointed that she couldn't help serve others. She knew, however, that she first needed to explore where her anxiety and depression were coming from, and learn how to give them up to God. But this desire to serve in Greece was placed on her heart for a reason, and she didn't let it go. With hard work, dedication, and prayer, she was able to serve in Greece just two months ago.

But she didn’t accomplish this on her own. “God had been working on me,” she shared. The mission trip to Greece "changed my life and wrecked my world." When the time came to choose an internship, Maranda wasn’t sure what it would mean to volunteer her entire summer to a mission, but she relied on God for the decision.

This reliance on God, the one who provides and protects, led Maranda to choose OMS.

“I love how welcoming and caring everyone is. They are truly happy to have me here serving with them, and it has been very encouraging knowing that."


By Mykaela Alvey, Summer Communications intern

Tags: internship, summer intern, counseling, missionary care, servant heart,

A Sense of Home at OMS: Summer Intern Fits in

June 15 2017

"I always knew I had a heart for international people, for helping others, nurturing them and loving and caring for them … that's when I really found my faith and my identity in Christ …"

Devondra Wakefield is taking her passion for people and applying it in the Human Resources Department of One Mission Society. She is serving as a mobilizer this summer, a job that compliments her major of Missions and Ministry at Kentucky Christian University.

Devondra grew up in a home that wasn't always focused on Christ, but she was fortunate enough to have an aunt who always invested in her spiritually. Devondra reflected on her search for Christ, "I didn't really grow up in a household where Christ was the center … where we talked about Christ, [or] where I learned anything about Christ, so anything outside of the prior knowledge I already had, I had to go seek." And that's exactly what she did on June 2, 2013, when she was saved and gave her life to Christ.

Upon graduating from high school, she made the decision to seek a nursing degree at Kentucky Christian University, but God had other plans about her future career. After spending two years in the nursing program, Devondra noticed God closing doors that led to her becoming a nurse. As a result of this, she made the split-second decision to change her major to Ministry with a focus in Missions.

Every ministry student at KCU is asked to fulfill an internship before graduation. It was this requirement that led Devondra to the International Conference of Missions (ICOM). She quickly saw that there were many organizations who were not keen on giving Devondra information on what she would be doing, except for one. Devondra talks about how throughout the entire day she just kept bumping into Heather, one of OMS' Mobilization workers, and it made an impact on her. Devondra felt a sense of home when she was talking with OMS, something she didn't feel with the other organizations. She reflected, "I really felt like I was wanted and someone really cared about my spiritual journey."

It was this feeling of "home" that brought Devondra to serve with the OMS this summer.

"OMS is a team that is always willing to walk alongside other coworkers, missionaries, and those coming to Christ."

Tags: internship, summer intern, missions, mission organization, hr, mobilizer,

A New Way to Pray: Summer Communications Intern Grows in Ministry

June 9 2017

“I am excited to explore how I can combine writing and my faith.”

Mykaela Alvey, a recent college graduate, is the journalism intern in the Communications Department at One Missions Society for the summer 2017. Despite her current desire to be a part of a mission organization, she only recently listened to this call from God.

Mykaela grew up as a preacher’s kid. From a young age, she fell into the image that she thought a pastor’s kid is supposed to have. “I was a leader in the youth group, I volunteered for the children’s ministry and Bible camp, which is not a bad thing, but it made it easy to have this mask and make it look like I had it all together.” Behind this preacher’s kid façade, Mykaela’s relationship with God was actually stagnant.

It wasn’t until her junior year of college, after watching the movie War Room, a story of a woman who turns to prayer when her life becomes difficult, that Mykaela felt her faith changing.

Afterward, Mykaela felt a nudge to buy a journal. “I later realized this nudge was from God.” This purchase radically changed her faith in God and propelled it forward. She had spent her entire life feeling like she couldn’t pray, but this purchase made her realize that this journal was her link to God, her own way of praying.

Mykaela began to grow stronger in her faith and by her senior year, she felt a call from God to go into either ministry or missions. “I think it [the call] was there my entire life, but I just chose to ignore it because there were more 'important things'—worldly things to do.” She finally decided to listen to this nudge from God and explore it.

Mykaela, has a degree in history and writing and was not looking to give up her specific interests. She wanted to find a job in ministry or missions where she could still pursue her writing passion.

So when she learned about and applied for the journalism internship at OMS, she was excited about what God had in store for her. Then God answered. Mykaela shed a few joyful tears when she officially received the internship position.

“Even though I’m only a summer intern, I feel like I am one small drop in this pool of water of making a difference, and I really like that I get to be a part of something like that.”

By Chelsea Long, OMS Summer Communications and Marketing Intern

Tags: internship, missions intern, communications intern, missions, summer intern, writing,

​Engaging the Next Generation

November 7 2016

Every year, 10-15 college students and young adults serve as interns at One Mission Society. These interns fill a variety of roles across OMS, bringing experience, enthusiasm, and new perspectives to their teams. Whether they’re with us a few hours a week or all summer, interns leave a lasting impact on OMS and on ministry around the world.

Clarissa Hunter served as a summer intern with OMS in 2014. After she graduated last year, God led Clarissa to serve on a short-term trip to Hungary, where she was able to put her strong administrative and communication skills to use. Through that experience, God called Clarissa to continue her service with OMS. Clarissa currently serves at the OMS World Headquarters in the Development Department while funding to return to Hungary as a full-time missionary.

OMS also hosts interns from other countries through denominational partnerships around the world.

Harold Hurtado was an intern from Colombia who served with OMS for six months earlier this year. Harold had a background in missions and a heart for people. Right before he began his internship, Harold’s denomination faced changes, and he was left without a job to return to after his internship.

Harold began praying about what was next while trusting in God’s plan and provision. He met Jonathan Morton, an OMS missionary who serves with New Life, a Hispanic church-planting ministry based in the Indianapolis area. Harold attended New Life Church and instantly found a community there. As he served at the OMS headquarters and became more engaged with his new church family, God called Harold to be involved in this ministry longer term. Now, Harold is back in Colombia funding to return to the U.S. to serve alongside Jonathan and the New Life church-planting network.

While not every intern goes on to re-engage with OMS in one of these ways, we hope every intern walks away with a more intimate relationship with Jesus, a deeper engagement in missions, and greater insight into how they can be a part of furthering Christ’s kingdom around the world. Will you support future world-changers like Clarissa and Harold?

Give to intern scholarship, one of our eight Christmas projects being highlighted this holiday season. Give here.

By Andrea Fisher, OMS Mobilization Team

Tags: internships, intern, world missions, global missions, short-term mission, college internship,

Young People Stepping Into Missions: Clarissa's Clear Call

September 20 2016

This is part 5 of a 5-part series of stories about millennials working in missions with OMS.

In God’s Word, the message that Jesus values children is evident. He says people must have a childlike heart. King Solomon highlights the joys of youth. Paul encourages young Timothy to set an example for believers everywhere in his ministry. The importance of young people is evident throughout the Bible. And it doesn’t just mention their importance, but it speaks of their responsibility. Just like other believers of other ages, Christian youth have a role to play in glorifying God and bringing his Good News to the world.

Fresh out of college, Clarissa Hunter has felt God calling her to the mission field in Budapest, Hungary. On the field, Clarissa will serve in communications and ministry coordination. As she begins the funding process, she is working at the OMS World Headquarters in Greenwood, Indiana, as the administrative assistant for Development and Marketing.

Clarissa’s journey started in 2014 when she interned for HOPE61, OMS’ human trafficking prevention ministry. She enjoyed that summer and considered applying for another OMS internship, seeking something she could do for a three-month period right after graduation. She found two internship options that interested her.

As she researched the two options, one of those in Hungary, Clarissa connected with Jonathan Long, the OMS field director for Hungary. She learned more about the vision for Hungary, the passion for transformation in that country, and the desire to come alongside the church in a supportive role to impact people’s lives. Clarissa was drawn to that vision, and after praying and thinking more about her decision, she chose the internship in Hungary.

Clarissa’s three months in Hungary was an affirming experience. She spent time writing and editing materials, helped mediate situations, and worked in teams to serve the Hungarian people. Who she was and what she liked to do seemed to line up perfectly with her jobs, and people recognized her God-given skills.

During Clarissa’s time there, Jonathan pitched the idea of her joining the Hungary team. At first, Clarissa was unsure if she should pursue that idea. Yet, before she even returned to the United States, she had applied to serve in Hungary and for a position at the OMS HQ. She soon had interviews lined up. Both of these interviews ended in success, as she was accepted to go to Hungary and also to work at headquarters during her funding and preparation process for the field.

Doors were flying open for Clarissa, but she still didn’t know what to do. Finally, she came to terms with the fact that she had subconsciously made her choice already to go to Hungary. It was almost as if, when she had left Budapest, she knew she would return. So, she jumped in and took the opportunity.

Currently, as she works at headquarters, Clarissa wants to invest her time where she is right now and to be present in this moment, focusing on her work here instead of always looking to Hungary. But when she does go to the mission field, she wants to continue to have that mentality, to be present in her work and choose to make the most of her time wherever God calls her.

Clarissa has a passion for understanding people and also helping people understand each other. She wants to reach out to those who are marginalized and connect with people who are overlooked by others. Her prayer is that God can work in and through her in Budapest, and also where she is now, to do this. She is thankful for the people that have helped her through this journey, and above all else she's thankful for God’s goodness in opening so many doors of opportunity for her.

As a young person stepping into missions, Clarissa encourages other young people to not let the vast opportunities keep them from choosing somewhere to serve. So many youth struggle with shutting down in response to an overload of information and tragedy, Clarissa said. Instead of letting that overwhelming feeling stop them from being involved somewhere, young people need to see what their God-given talents and skills are best suited for. Then, they need to choose a cause they care about and take steps to help others. The more involved you are, Clarissa added, the less focused you are on just yourself, which creates greater empathy and understanding about what is happening in the world.

Please pray for Clarissa as she works at OMS headquarters and prepares to serve in Hungary. Pray that she seeks to be present and relational, that her focus is on others, and that she chooses to always make the most of her time to serve people and God.

To learn more and to give to Clarissa, visit https://onemissionsociety.org/give/ClarissaHunter.

By Jess Mitchell, Communications Intern

Tags: mission call, hungary, serve, hope61, internship, intern, communications,

Young People Stepping Into Missions: Harold Comes to America

September 13 2016

This is part 4 of a 5-part series of stories about millennials working in missions with OMS. This is part two of two of Harold's story. Harold served at the OMS World HQ in Greenwood, Indiana, for six months, learning the details of a mission organization, especially in the Mobilization Department.

Part Two:

After joining the new department of missions, Harold knew there wasn’t going to be much support. They were a young group in their 20s, starting an international program. With the task of creating a mission-focused department, Harold and the others started to initiate several new programs. They planned to bring people to Medellin and share this vision about how they needed to share Jesus outside of their churches, empowering them to return to their churches with a new perspective.

By 2013, they sent out a missionary who, for the first time ever, ministered to Muslims. The Lord provided all the financial resources, Harold said, and they started to work more with their churches and sponsor projects in other countries like Venezuela, Ecuador, and Panama.

Harold’s denomination, which OMS founded, also developed more communication with OMS. Today, OMS and the Colombian denomination has worked together to send three Colombian interns to OMS every year for a six-month duration so they can foster good relations with OMS and learn from each other.

But the work Harold and his department did was not always easy. A lot of it was slow and difficult. Not everything worked out well, especially at the beginning. Many pastors closed the doors literally in their faces, Harold said, because they didn’t understand missions. Others said the president of their denomination was crazy to send young people to do this type of work. It took several years to see progress because the denomination was well established and tied closely to traditions. But when progress did begin, the results were incredible.

The mission department has continued to grow over the years. In 2012, they sent someone to London to minister to the over 100,000 Latin people who live there. Oscar journeyed to England to begin work there while Harold stayed as the director of the department in Medellin. Now, Oscar is helping to run a church where over 250 people attend. There are also 15 house churches.

Harold has also continued work in Colombia. In the last three years, he has worked with other mission organizations and denominations, encouraging them to look toward missions and spreading the Gospel through cultural missionaries who truly serve the Lord. Sometimes the work goes very slowly, he added, especially because they want to make sure everything is done well. But God has been faithful and has continued to lay ideas on Harold’s and others’ hearts about how their churches can step out of their physical walls and reach the community around them, being present not just to evangelize but to serve and invest time in people, just like how Christ did during his ministry on Earth.

Throughout Harold’s ministry in Colombia, he had a connection with OMS. They continued to send interns there, but OMS said that it would be good if Harold also came to the United States headquarters to learn more about mobilization, how to apply new things in Colombia, and also share with OMS what he’s been doing.

At first, Harold didn’t feel like he was called to leave his ministry in Colombia. But at the end of 2015, he started to feel like God was calling him to leave the part of ministry his was involved in. The Lord told him that this ultimately wasn’t his department, Harold said, but it was God’s department, and God alone would decide who went or remained. Harold talked again with OMS, and after praying about it, he agreed to go to the United States for six months. He had a lot of fear upon arrival because of the language barrier, the new culture, and the new people. But he added that he brought a suitcase with him, filled with his hopes based on Jesus Christ.

After six months at OMS, Harold said he’s not sorry that he came. It was the best decision he could have made. Now, he returns to Colombia with more knowledge and experience on how he can serve better as he figures out the next steps in his ministry.

God blessed Harold with a calling to missions when he was young, and throughout his teenage years and now his young adult life, he has been faithful in following where God has called him, whether that be in Colombia or abroad. To the other young people who are seeking who they are and where they belong, Harold encourages them to realize their dreams, but to do so with God’s perspective. There is nothing wrong with having dreams for the future, Harold said, but the danger is when young people eliminate God from their thinking when they explore those dreams. Not everyone is called to be a missionary, he continued, and that is fine. The bigger question young people need to ask themselves is if they are allowing God to guide them. Whether someone is called to the mission field, the soccer field, the stage, or an office, ultimately the purpose is to do everything so that the name of Jesus is known.

Pray for Harold as he continues to follow God’s calling for his ministry. Please pray that Harold may keep his passions close to his heart, that he looks to Christ as his model, and that no matter where God sends, him his life reflects that of his Creator’s.

Tags: missions, cross cultural missions, colombia, intern, young people in missions,

​Contemplative Questions from a Hungarian Bath

June 22 2016

Fall break in Budapest: My journey to OMS headquarters

“Have you thought about what you want to do?”

I stared at my friend Lauren Pupillo (an OMS missionary serving in Hungary) as we sat in the gigantic Gellért thermal baths in Budapest, Hungary. People lounged in the warm, jacuzzi-like pools, but I stiffened up when Lauren asked me that question.

What I want to do … with my life? I wasn’t sure.

I had studied abroad for the fall semester during my junior year in Florence, Italy. During my fall break, with encouragement from Lauren, I traveled to Budapest for the week. Lauren graciously opened her home to me and showed me around the city. I saw museums, government buildings, historical landmarks and memorials, tried amazing food, learned more about Hungarian culture, and saw Lauren and her fellow missionaries at One Mission Society (OMS) work together to create programs and witness to the Hungarians about Jesus Christ.

Amidst the fun and chaos of that week, there were moments, like the moment in the baths, where we both could be still and quiet and just talk together. It was refreshing. But the question of what I wanted to do in the future always made me squirm.

I wasn’t even sure what I was going to do that upcoming summer, let alone after graduation.

I told Lauren that I wanted to apply for internships but wasn’t sure where to look, and she mentioned that One Mission Society offered internships in the summer.

That was the last time we talked about that topic for the rest of the week. After that, we continued to explore, and I continued to see Lauren and the others in action on the mission field. They lived together and served God together. I quickly fell in love with the city that they loved, and I was fascinated with the work they were doing to reach out to people. I was awestruck at their selflessness and spur-of-the-moment service to organize projects or help people in need, as well as the struggles that came with it.

When I returned to Italy, I started my internship search. I hadn’t forgotten Lauren’s plug about OMS, so I went to their site and came across a summer communications/journalism internship at the OMS headquarters in Indiana. Having a major in journalism (the second in theatre), I was instantly drawn to the opportunity to work at an organization I was familiar with, having the privilege of telling stories about the work that was going on in the world for God’s glory.

I didn’t wait and connected with OMS immediately to start the application process. That was in November. Months later, after I returned from Italy and started my spring semester at my university, I got a call from Greenwood, Indiana. I had gotten the position.

Fast forward to May of 2016. After a long day of travel, I finally made it to Indiana to start my OMS summer internship. Looking back on the whole process, I have to praise God for the opportunity. Who knew a simple invitation to spend a week in Budapest would bring about a two-month writing internship?

I am excited and full of energy as I begin this summer at One Mission Society. But I know there will be some big challenges. Apart from the multiple projects the Communications Department has to work on, I also have to circle back to the question Lauren asked me months ago in Budapest: what do I want to do? But the question has lost some urgency in my mind as I look around at where I am and who I’m surrounded by. The people at One Mission Society, here at headquarters and abroad in places like Budapest, have something contagious in them. There’s no mistaking the presence of God here. There’s no mistaking the passion they have for that “One Mission” of spreading the Gospel to the ends of the earth. So now, instead of constantly thinking about myself and my future career, the bigger question that arises is this:

How can I do what I am called to do right now with that same passion?

Ever since arriving, I am constantly thanking God for bringing me here. I can see His hand guiding me since my time abroad. I pray that I can feel His guiding hand again as I seek to do His work and answer this new question on my mind while working at OMS.

From Budapest to Greenwood and beyond, I look forward to this journey ahead of me.

Jess Mitchell serves as a summer Communications intern at the OMS World HQ in Greenwood, Indiana.

Tags: hungary, italy, intern, internship, communications, journey,

Change of Plans: Reflections from an OMS Summer Intern

August 14 2014

Four years ago, I made a conscious decision to attend a secular university. After looking at a few different schools, God made it obvious that Ball State University was where he wanted me. For journalism news majors, like myself, at Ball State, it is pretty much assumed that every student’s dream is to work for CNN or the New York Times. If national news isn’t the dream, local news better be the top priority.

So, when I told my professor that I was going to intern at a Christian mission organization, she was less than thrilled. In fact, I was told to rethink my life. I was shocked and angry, but little did she (or I!) know, that was exactly what I was going to do throughout my internship with One Mission Society.

From the first day of my internship when the Communications Department started singing songs from the “Frozen” soundtrack, I realized that those who work at OMS aren’t employees or coworkers … they’re a family. The people who walk the halls of OMS headquarters included me in their family. Though I was only there for 10 weeks, so many people went out of their way to ask about my life. I wasn’t just known about … I was known. It made me realize that this is the kind of place where I will want to work, and I want to thank OMS for treating me less like an intern and more like Christina.

I realized quickly that the atmosphere that I loved every day was possible because God is central in everything. Everything wasn’t always perfect or easy, but I found a lot of joy knowing that my work helped further the kingdom of God. That being said, the need for prayer became so much more evident to me this summer. I grew up in a Christian home and continue to attended church every Sunday, but prayer was never a regular part of my life. This summer, I saw the power of prayer through the people of OMS. I saw the relationships they have with Jesus, and I began to think about the impact that prayer could and should be having on my own life.

Sometime during the first week of my internship, I actually said the sentence “I’ve never felt called to go overseas.” I never thought that I had a reason to go overseas. I’m not a teacher, and I certainly don’t have seminary experience. My theological knowledge, compared to what I thought missionaries should have, is lacking. However, throughout my internship, I was reminded that God doesn’t ask all of us to attend seminary and learn how to read the Bible in different languages, but he does ask us to use the talents he has given us according to his will. Now, 11 weeks after that first week of my internship, I am planning a trip this winter to Hungary to work with the OMS team there and to help them with some communication needs.

I’m sure that this is not at all what my professor had in mind when she told me to rethink my life, but as I look back on the past 11 weeks, I’m realizing that this is exactly what God had in mind.

By Christina Franks, OMS Summer Intern, Communications Department

Tags: plans, journalism intern, god's plans,