Ministry is a Relational Endeavor

Written by Jason Schoff
From the moment a potential volunteer comes to our orientation, they learn how much we value relationships. We say ministry is a relational endeavor. However, we want this to be more than just a stated value; we want it to be a living reality. Our volunteers accomplish much more relationally with our immigrants than we could ever dream of.
Last month we saw major evidence of just how invested our volunteer force is in the relational endeavor. While our staff was out of town for a conference in Indianapolis, I was left with the options of cancelling our Latino adult English classes or challenging our students and volunteer teachers to meet together over dinner, a Coke, or ice cream. I put the challenge out and our volunteers marched "adelante", or forward, without much hesitation.
What resulted was priceless! It was a new level of friendship and relationship on which to continue building over the remaining six weeks of the trimester. One student shared about the transformation of his life, from a time when he domineered his wife to coming to see her as his equal, all while his classmate and volunteer teacher listened. Another student hosted her teacher and other students in her home--what a proud moment for Rosa. Several other volunteers decided to join their two students together and meet for ice cream in a local Mexican shop.
For many of our volunteers, this was a true first: spending time with an immigrant outside of a programmed activity and in a new cultural landscape. All this happened on a Thursday night while our staff was listening to conference speakers far away. I could not be any more excited for our volunteers and their commitment to becoming friends to our immigrant community!
Want to share in these fun adventures? Become a volunteer, too! For more information, go to

In other news:
  • Our Leaders In Training--12 pre-teens and teens--are learning that serving can be fun and relational!  They've visited the residents of a local assisted living facility twice now, and last week enjoyed sharing popcorn and doing a craft together!
  • Like our volunteers' efforts toward relational ministry that Jason described above, Mission Adelante staff is deeply committed to sharing life with the families we serve by getting involved on a personal level in their lives and activities.  Brooke and David Coon have been deepening their friendship with the families of several of the teens whom they lead by sharing meals and participating in a walk to support individuals with Down's Syndrome, the younger sibling of one of the teens being affected by the condition.
  • Similarly, Molly Merrick continues to mentor two pre-teen/teen girls by spending a large amount of time with them.  Now, the girls' upstairs neighbor, another teen girl, is tagging along, too!  Molly's effectiveness lies in her consistent investment of time!
Prayer needs:
  • Please pray for an upcoming house concert for our Bhutanese friends as we all learn to worship Jesus with Nepali music.
  • Brooke and David Coon are taking two teens to a teen conference this weekend.  Pray that the teens will grow in their walk with Jesus and realize more of their leadership potential.
  • Pray for the Lord to work in the lives of an immigrant couple struggling with marital conflict.
  • As a way to better emphasize equipping immigrant leaders for ministry, our Latino worship community will begin meeting as several house churches in November.    Please pray for the training process of the leadership teams, and for momentum to continue.
Current needs:
  • A Multi-Media Specialist, who will devote two to three hours a week to the use of multi-media to tell the story of Mission Adelante, its programs, and its people in ways that increase ownership and passion and inspire others to get involved.
  • A female volunteer to tutor two girls in our Leaders In Training program on Mondays from 4:00-6:30 beginning November 28 through the rest of the school year.
  • Adults' and children's fall and winter clothing in all sizes, and especially winter coats for 5-7 year-old boys to stock our Resource Center.  Please call Molly at 913-281-6274 x5 to arrange dropping off your donation.
  • Board games appropriate for kids ages 3-12, in good condition and containing all of their pieces.
Upcoming dates:
  • Staff Open Houses: Saturday, November 19, 3:00-6:30, Mission Adelante staff homes in Kansas City, Kansas 66102.
  • Fall Break: There will be no outreach programs Tuesday, November 22 or Thursday, November 24.  The Mission Adelante office will be closed Wednesday, November 23-Saturday, November 26.