Friday, November 24, 2017

#KingdomConnection: UMVIM Team Leaders

Giving Tuesday 2017 is on November 28th, and we hope that you will partner with United Methodist Volunteers in Mission, Southeastern Jurisdiction to promote, encourage and enable people to exemplify "Christian Love in Action" through short-term mission service both at home and around the world! Please give generously by clicking here!

UMVIM's #KingdomConnection connects the local church to mission opportunities by training Team Leaders to lead teams from their local churches. One of those team leaders is Leigh Randall from Advent United Methodist Church in Simpsonville, South Carolina. Randall is the Director of Student Ministries at Advent UMC, as well as the Staff Liaison for Missions. Every year, she leads both a team of graduating Seniors and a team of adults from her congregation to serve with Mission Guatemala. The mobilization of congregants, as well as the long-term relationship the church has built with an international project, exemplifies how a local church can make a substantial impact through short-term mission. 

Read below to see what Leigh has to say about missions in the #UMC.

How has your Team Leader training helped strengthen the mission work of your teams?

Leigh: My Team Leader training set the foundation for the many missions that I have led. The training was thorough and allowed the guidelines for leading international missions as well as domestic missions to be taught in an environment that was very supportive.

How has the connection of the United Methodist church helped your efforts in mission?

Leigh: The connection with the United Methodist Church has provided the bridge to an amazing organization called Mission Guatemala. Through this connection, we were not only introduced to the amazing ministry of Mission Guatemala, but we have partners with them for 7 missions since 2013 and have 2 missions planned for 2018. My home church, Advent UMC, developed a deeper partnership with Mission Guatemala by supporting yearly the Becas con Miƛion Scholarship program.

Share a brief story about the impact of teams that you have led onto the mission field.

Leigh: Our connection with Mission Guatemala began as a mission opportunity for graduating seniors. It has grown to an additional mission with our adults each year. Not only is amazing mission and ministry occurring while we are serving in Guatemala, but it is incredible to see how the Holy Spirit uses experiences gained from the mission to expand the vision and heart of the graduating Seniors as well as the adults! For the graduating seniors, it helps set the trajectory of their lives, helping them see the world as being much larger as they begin the next chapter of their lives. Through the experiences, the Holy Spirit has called a number of our students into Global Health initiatives, pastoral leadership and immigrant care opportunities to name a few. For the adults, the experiences have provided a renewed passion for servant leadership in local missions and beyond!

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