Not a Glamorous Job

September 25 2017

Many people don’t understand why some missionaries chose to stay in their home country to work for the kingdom of God. The common thought is often: “Mission work is done OUTSIDE of the United States.” I understand that thought process. I used to believe it myself.

I thought that if I wanted to do anything significant for the kingdom, I had to get my Bible degree and a pilot’s license, move to Africa, and fly food, water, and Bibles to the rural tribes in need. That was my plan. Until God challenged me to “be faithful with those around me.” To be honest, I thought this challenge was more of a stepping stone. I thought the challenge was Jesus saying: “Show me you can be faithful here before I send you overseas.” Little did I know, he was actually preparing me for a role that I had never thought of – working with immigrants and refugees in the U.S.

God is showing me that some of us don’t have to leave home in order to be missionaries to someone of a different culture and/or religion. He is bringing millions of people from all over the world to live in the U.S. as doctors, farmers, cashiers, ministers, and as our neighbors. Foreign missions is still extremely important, but God is increasing the opportunity for us to literally do missions in our own backyard.

In my experience, I have built friendships and shared Jesus with people from India who are of the Sikh religion. My team and I have helped 200+ Chin people, from Myanmar, learn English while using the Bible as a part of their English class. I’ve helped four churches and several ministry leaders find ways they can minister to immigrants in their areas. We have also been asked to help send immigrant missionaries back to their home country so that they can share the Gospel. All of this took place within five miles of our home.

My wife has accomplished even more than I as she serves at the OMS World Headquarters as a homeland missionary. She works with all of the OMS missionaries to make sure their donor information is up-to-date, and ensures that all of our constituent’s addresses are well maintained. It may not sound like much, but every day she empowers missionaries in more than 70 countries to do the work they are called to do. She assists missionaries (both here and abroad) to raise millions of dollars so that they can continue their work. She does it all with a servant's heart.

What we do is not glamorous to the world. No one is going to write a book about us. We don’t have amazing stories of winning an unreached people group to Christ. But it’s the quiet, behind-the-scenes work we are called to do. We will happily and obediently assist others in their work as we faithfully serve the Lord in the homeland.

Jason Ferkel, Coordinator of Immigrant Outreach

Tags: homeland missionaries, oms world headquarters, mailing list, immigrant ministry, ministry to refugees,

HR and Missions

September 19 2017

If you were to take a stroll through the offices of the Human Resources Department of One Mission Society at the World Headquarters in Greenwood, Indiana, on any given day, you'd see lots of people engaged in many activities and conversations which, much of the time, happen entirely behind the scenes but are vital for fulfilling the OMS mission and vision.

Chances are you'd see the vice president for Human Resources and his assistant on a phone conference with the folks who administer employee benefits for OMS missionaries and staff or with those who advise OMS on the ever-changing landscape of complying with government regulations regarding health care and employment. They might be talking with a missionary couple who are just returning for home ministry assignment between terms on the field.

Across the way, you'd likely hear a member of the Mobilization team answering questions from someone inquiring about opportunities to serve or helping someone clarify their sense of God's calling to cross-cultural ministry. If you listen closely, you might hear another Mobi team member helping a missionary candidate complete their application or checking references in preparation for upcoming interviews. Almost every day, you'd likely hear one of the mobilizers praying with someone on the phone.

A few steps down the hall, you might see someone from the Missionary Care team working on a "landing plan" to help a new single missionary headed to the field arrive and settle into their new home and assignment. Another team member might be talking via Skype with first-term missionaries to check in on how their family is doing after the first few months on the field. Or maybe you’d hear them helping a family prepare to say their goodbyes as they transition to a new assignment or return to the U.S. These folks support new missionary kids, seasoned veterans moving toward retirement, and families at all the points in between.

If you look around and don't see anyone from the Learning and Development team, that's not surprising. They might well be downstairs in the training room, facilitating Orientation for newly accepted missionary candidates or CROSS Training, the three-week learning experience that prepares men and women who are ready to head to their assignments with One Mission Society. If they're not downstairs, they could be somewhere else around the building, meeting with OMS leaders to design and implement new training initiatives. They might even be off-site facilitating training or providing coaching for our missionary field teams or U.S. partners.

The Lord has indeed blessed OMS with a corps of godly men and women who serve him in cross-cultural ministry around the world. But every day, the HR team members use the spiritual gifts and abilities God has given them to mobilize, equip, and support OMS missionaries and their families around the world. Like overseas cross-cultural missionaries, these homeland missionaries raise their own financial support in order to follow God's call in their lives. To read more about any of our missionaries, visit Find a Missionary on the OMS website.

Pray for the HR team, including:

HR Admin Team: Tommy Van Abeele, Laura Crosby, Doris Waters, Linda Six

Mobilization Team: Danny Beasley, Andrea Fisher, Margo Concepcion, Heather McPherson, Kelly Coy, KyoungMin Choi, and EunJin Kim

Missionary Care Team: Steve Christener, Kathy Fouts, Deanna Cathcart, Lori Long, Mark and Cindy Freer, Esther Cann, and Mel Reese

Learning and Development Team: Dick Freed, Carolyn Knight, Gail Davis, Sophie Schafer

By Dick Freed, Director of Learning and Development

Tags: human resources, hr team, homeland missionary, home team, mobilization, member care,

Serving Where God Has Called

September 12 2017

Danny and I served as missionaries in Ecuador with One Mission Society. Serving as a missionary on the field, we had stories and pictures that all seemed very exciting. There were days we were traveling in the jungle in a canoe or slogging through the mud to reach a Shuar village and share the Gospel. These dear people responded to the Word with open hearts and many came to Christ. I can share these stories and show these pictures, and people are willing to support that ministry.

But God called us to return to the U.S. to serve at the OMS World Headquarters. Danny serves as the director of the Mobilization Department, and I work as the controller. We live in a house and work in an office in the U.S., much the same as other people in the U.S. do. Because of this, many people believe that we no longer need support. And there are others who only want to support those doing work on the “front lines.” Our support has dropped because of where we serve Christ.

We loved working with the people in Ecuador. Our ministry there had great value. But we wholeheartedly believe that our ministry here has just as much value. Romans 10:14-15 talks about the steps needed before people can call upon the name of the Lord. One of the steps is someone being sent to tell them. Normally as missionaries, we talk about the sender being the supporter, but a big part of being sent is also the mission agency and those working in the homeland office. How can a missionary be sent without the work of the Mobilization team that finds them, guides them, and trains and prepares them? How can a missionary be sent without a Finance team that is receiving the support funds, properly accounting for the funds, allocating them, and getting them to the missionary as they serve on the field?

The work being done by homeland missionaries is critical to the work of the missionaries in the 72 countries where OMS serves. Yet, it is so much more difficult for a homeland missionary to raise support. I would encourage you, if the Lord is placing it on your heart to support his work around the world, please remember those missionaries serving at their mission headquarters. These roles are just as vital to kingdom work, just not as glamorous.

By Julie Beasley, OMS Homeland Missionary

Tags: homeland missionary, called to serve, faithful servant, u.s. missionary,

​Where are the Heroes?

September 5 2017

Indiana’s most highly decorated World War II veteran does not want to talk about the horrible atrocities of war and his experiences in the jungles of the South Pacific. There he fought the enemy without relief, fresh clothing, or other normal comforts.

When pressed for more details, his comment is, “I am no hero.”

He continues to say, “The troops behind the lines, the quartermaster corp who brought us food and other supplies, they are the real heroes. Some of them gave their lives to help us.”

In the same way, missionaries in One Mission Society fight against the powers of darkness and evil forces on many fronts around the globe. There must be a supply line. They are not called quartermasters, rather the heroes behind the lines are called homeland missionaries. They provide finances, counseling, communications and literature, and short-term medical, construction, and prayer teams. They are the link to the individuals and churches who pray and financially give to our mission.

Where are the heroes? They are unseen behind the lines, working faithfully at computers, praying, and allowing our frontline missionaries to do what they have been called to.

Paul, our veteran, was led to a personal relationship with Jesus Christ at the OMS World Headquarters by one of the homeland missionaries. Paul, our Hoosier hero, is now behind the lines doing battle on his knees, loving his enemies into the kingdom.

By Warren Hardig, Men for Missions

Tags: homeland missionary, behind the scenes, world hq,