“Short Time, or Long:” Best Practices to Turn Short-Term Missions into Long-Term Partnerships
Keywords:Short-Term Mission, Congregations, Partnerships
Using original survey research supplied by churches from the US and around the world, I will address patterns of belief, thinking, and behavior concerning partnership that have allowed short-term trips to become more impactful and healthy by placing them within the context of long-term relationships. I will begin with some preliminary tasks; first outlining the research methodology employed, then sparing a few remarks on how widespread these international congregational partnerships (ICPs) have become. I will then address the perennial issue of determining what constitutes a healthy expression of partnership after which I will describe how healthy existing ICPs actually are. After laying this groundwork, I will turn to the patterns of belief, thinking, and behavior that the healthiest partnerships have in common. Finally, I will close with some thoughts on how churches can set up their partnerships to give short-term engagements long-term impact.