student ministry, youth ministry, leadership, dream big

Student Mission Questions

By Doug Franklin May 4, 2011

I was 17 years old when I went on my first mission trip. I went with my church to the inner city of Chicago. We stayed in a rescue mission and I slept in a cot right next the the homeless people who had been lucky enough to get a place at night. It was an eye opening experience; many of the people in the mission came in drunk or with mental illness. I was shocked by what I saw and at the same time amazed at how real and nice these people were. During our afternoon VBS type program, I led two boys in the sinner’s prayer. I’m not sure if it led to transformation in these kids’ lives but it did in mine. I tell you all this because I want to remind you that your mission trip this summer has long-term effects on your students and the more planning and purpose we put into the trips the greater the impact will be. I am not talking about logistic planning but spiritual planning. Here are three questions to ask yourself in order to help you and your students get the most out of the trip.

1. Do I have a plan to challenge students spiritual while on the trip?
Remember going is not enough. We need use all the different parts of the trip to connect students to God. I like to ask the students to make a God size goal once they are on the trip. This kind of goal can only be reached with Gods input the guidance.

2. Do I know where each student is at spiritually?
Every students is different and knowing where they are at spiritually means you and the other adults will know actually where and how to challenge them.

3. How do you plan to follow-up with students after the trip?

While on the trip many students will make commitments and life applications. How do you plan to follow-up and hold them accountable?

About the Author

Doug Franklin

Doug Franklin is the president of LeaderTreks, an innovative leadership development organization focusing on students and youth workers. Doug and his wife, Angie, live in West Chicago, Illinois. They don’t have any kids, but they have 2 dogs that think they are children. Diesel and Penelope are Weimaraners  who never leave their side. Doug grew up in…  Read More