Pastor Austin Gardner and VBM Director Jeff Bush discuss the various policies and procedures of Vision missions. In this episode, they focus on explaining why VBM asks their missionaries to work with a veteran.

  • Purpose of This Series 
    • Tackling misconceptions about VBM
    • Explaining the reason for why VBM does certain things
    • Trying to stay open and transparent
  • Why does VBM ask their missionaries to work with veteran missionaries?
    • If you haven’t lived overseas, it’s hard to understand
    • How do you know how to live? 
      • How do you cross the border
      • How do you manage insurance
      • How do you do anything?
    • Getting to the field and having someone with you is a huge help
  • Wouldn’t it be better to work alone to avoid interpersonal relationship stress?
    • Some people can handle being a pioneer and working alone, but many can’t
    • There are definitely problems between relationships
    • But working with veterans is still better than trying to make it alone
    • Even missionaries who speak the language well struggle in a new country
    • It is so much harder for people who are new
    • Most people haven’t done much ministry in America, much less overseas
    • We want to see people trained to do the ministry
    • We don’t want to throw them out by themselves
    • Not every veteran is ready to have another missionary to teach
      • They might not know the language well
      • They may not have a ministry going well yet
    • You need a missionary who is ready to help train and teach you
    • We don’t always learn well from our mistakes
    • We can’t make every mistake, so why not learn from the mistakes of others
    • New missionaries really need to be pushed
    • You need another American who is willing to point out your mistakes where nationals might be too polite to tell you
  • Why not learn a language before you get to the field
    • You will learn it the wrong way
    • You will learn it with the wrong grammar
    • And you will learn it with the wrong accent
  • What are some benefits to working with someone?
    • Comfort for the new missionary
      • My wife needs to know that we will be okay
      • We often like to have safety nets
      • We just shouldn’t have them for too long
    • Learning the language
      • You have to learn the language well
      • You need to know that you need help! 
      • People often think they speak the language well, but they don’t
    • Ministry Training
      • Again, a lot of pope haven’t don’e much ministry especially in a foreign context
      • VBM is sending young guys to the field
      • That is great for language learning
      • But usually that means that they don’t have much ministry experience yet
      • Pastor Gardner had years of ministry experience before he became a missionary
      • But he didn’t understand right away how to do ministry on the field
      • There are different cultures that make things difficult
      • Brother Jeff made many mistakes while training in Peru, but Pastor Gardner was able to help him through the mistakes
    • The VBM policies and procedures are for the good of the missionaries
  • Closing Remarks
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