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The goal of this study was to create a ministry plan for a short-term mission trip with multi-generational participants for the purpose of connecting spiritual formation with missions in order to create life-long discipleship practices. The curriculum created in this project was implemented at Trinity United Methodist Church in Moberly, Missouri, where recent data identified a deep disconnect between service and spiritual formation. The curriculum connected the spiritual disciplines to all aspects of the mission trip, including pre and post trip meetings, with the goal of uniting the discipline of service into the deeper work of spiritual formation.
Both scripture and the work of John Wesley set a model for service that occurs within community, through the power of the Holy Spirit. The goal of this dissertation was to create a ministry plan that addressed spiritual formation in regards to a short-term mission trip in order to create a curriculum that will better connect a scriptural and theological understanding of missions as part of lifelong discipleship. To fulfill this goal, participants engaged in several spiritual disciplines within the context of the community. Following the completion of the mission trip, an assessment was given to judge if participants had a new understanding of service and engaged in new or increased their participation in the spiritual disciplines.
This study concludes that the integration of spiritual disciplines into a mission trip did translate into spiritual growth and a greater articulation in the connection between spiritual formation and service. The role of community provided an avenue for discussion and reflection that allowed participants the opportunity to integrate spiritual insights into long-term discipleship practices and change their previous theology on service . The materials created in this study will be available for use in other Methodist Churches.
Doctor of Ministry
short-term missions, multi-generational, spiritual formation, missions, discipleships, curriculum
Material is subject to copyright.
Nix, Kathryn C., "Short-term Mission Trips: A Wesleyan Theology for Service and Lifelong Spiritual Formation" (2018). Doctor of Ministry Projects. 307.