“Faith over fear”: dealing with the dangers of mission trips

One Lincoln church will continue in-person trips once the pandemic is over, thinking of the impact they can make.

LINCOLN, Neb. (KLKN) – The Haitian missionary kidnapping is a shocking reminder of the dangers that can await missionaries. Despite that threat, many people still feel compelled to help. For them, the risk is just a part of what they do.

“There’s always going to be nerves with mission teams”, explains Christ Place Church Missions Director Ashley Yeackley. “I think that’s what’s cool when we’re operating out of faith, because it’s different than just traveling on vacation somewhere. Most people who go, they do feel that call, or that burden from the Lord to say, ‘Hey, this is my next step of faith’.”

That doesn’t mean folks are just blindly hopping on a plane and dropping into danger. In fact, it’s generally the opposite.

“Because we partner with people who are boots on the ground”, says Yeackley, “we know they are never going to invite us or send us into a situation that’s not safe.”

Yeackley acknowledges there is always an element of risk, but she describes it something of a calculated one: “They themselves can’t control everything that happens, but there is that element of partnership and care.”

There is one option that’s arise from the pandemic that’s perfectly safe: virtual experiences. As in-person trips started being canceled, conversations turned to alternative ways of helping out, and the virtual experiences that bring the food, the culture, and the history of the rest of the world became the best option.

“Just like, basically, taking India, as much as you can put it in a bag. So they got to explore the items, and what I found was so cool was that it created great conversations within the home about missions and people outside of the country”, explains Yeackley.

Once things go back to normal, the in-person trips will likely resume, but these virtual trips appear to be here to stay, giving people a few options to serve.

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