Mission Trips with Man Up – 5 Reasons to GO!

(The following blog post is the last in a three-part series written by Man Up and Go Champion Jeff Ford. Read 3 Things to Know Before You Go and 3 Things to Expect from a Short Term Trip for the first two installments of this series.)

Once you’ve sought the face of God and understand your motive for wanting to serve Him, and once you know what to expect from a short term trip, then it’s time to GO!

Why Should I Choose Man Up and Go?

We understand your local church may do international mission trips, and if they do it well, we would love for you to hook up with them. But sometimes a smaller church or school doesn’t have the capacity or the ministry to which God is calling you. If that’s the case, then we invite you to join us on a future short term international mission trip. Here are five reasons you should go on a trip with Man Up and Go:

1. We’re going to live the Abundant Life together. You should only go on an international trip with us if you’re ready and willing to obey Jesus’ command in John 10:10: “I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.” We’re all about living life on mission. Living with purpose, living to LOVE BIG, and loving to live life to its fullest.

 

2. We’re going to challenge you. You’re not just going to sit and hold babies at an orphanage. YES, you probably will hold baby orphans, but you also might make necklaces side-by-side with ladies from the community, share your testimony to teenagers in a school, sing with children at a VBS, hug a Muslim, support a pastor in his attempt to alleviate material poverty in his community, maybe even arm wrestle a participant at one of our men’s conferences. (You may even conquer your fear of heights or raging class 5 rivers.) If you’re not ready to be stretched, you’re not ready for a Man Up mission trip.

 

3. We have a long history with the same ministry partners. We’re not a hit and run organization. We’re in it for eternal purposes. We’ve been to some partners as many as 10 times in the last 5 years, and we have no anticipation of slowing down. Partnering with us to further the Gospel and equip our brothers and sisters for ministry will have lasting effects for generations to come. Though you’ll be in in country for just a short period of time, your presence will make a long-term difference.

 

4. We have a great team of leaders. Everywhere we go in Africa and elsewhere, the same comment is made – “There’s something different about the Man Up team.” We’re not exactly sure what ingredients make up our success, but a big one is our leaders. All of our leaders have a certain “essence” that is contagious. They know how to LOVE BIG and bring the energy, insight, experience, and love for Jesus that will help you encounter God in a fresh way as you serve in His purposes.

 

5. We’ll equip you with everything you need to be successful. Fundraising, paperwork, vaccinations, waivers, spiritual prep, fundraising, packing, planning…did we mention fundraising? We know people stress about these things and we promise to help you navigate them with confidence. We strive to be excellent in all we do (Ecc. 9:10), and we’ll make sure you’re excellent too.

Ready to Man Up and Go? Man or women, boy or girl, we’re looking for missions-minded folks who want to set the world on fire with the BIG LOVE of Jesus Christ.

Ebenezer Bike Delivery

 

(The following blog post is written by Man Up and Go Champion Jeff Ford.)


Recently Man Up and Go had the wonderful privilege of partnering with another non-profit, Bikes 4 Orphans, in delivering 16 brand new bicyles to our friends in Kibuku District, Uganda – Ebenezer Children’s Home.

An example of the sign of the times, we connected with Bikes 4 Orphans over a year ago on Twitter, and after months of communication, the bikes were delievered to Pastor George’s ministry in rural Uganda. The children who go to school under Pastor George’s care walk as much as 3.5 miles back and forth each day, so the impact of these bicycles in equipipng these youths with a substantial Christian education is obvious.

The minister of education from the district was on hand to present these bikes to each of the 16 children. The children were required to sign a document promising to use the bike with an attitude of gratitude and according to the Ebenezer Children’s Home rules and regulations. Below is a clip of the minister gifting a bike to one of the children in an official ceremony.

We are thankful to Bikes 4 Orphans for contacting us and partnering with us to make this happen. You can read more about this delivery on their blog HERE. Below is a gallery of the delivery and the children who received bikes. We hope you enjoy this fun update about our dear partner in Uganda, Pastor George Kooli.

Man Up and Go in the DR

(The following blog post is written by Mitch Hauschildt; Mitch co-led our team to the Dominican Republic March 6-12, 2016.)

Recently, Man Up and Go sent a mission team to the Dominican Republic (DR) for the first time.  The DR is clearly a beautiful country, filled with sandy beaches, turquoise waters, and a lot of amazing people.  It is also a very open and loving society, full of people who are anxious to hear about Christ Jesus and the role that He can play in their lives. Unfortunately, there is also a very dark undercurrent, filled with a large culture of drugs and prostitution. Never have we traveled anywhere where the dichotomy was so strong between the physical beauty of the countryside and people, combined with the spiritual darkness that is palpable while walking the local streets.

We were extremely blessed to be able to partner with Mike Shaheen and his staff, which was comprised of an American family doing great missionary work overseas, and 10 local Dominicans.  Mike works full time as the in-country director for Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA), and under his leadership, the local program that he started on his own has grown to a staff of 12 men who mentor and love on the local people, using the sport of Baseball as their vehicle.

Everyone on the team knew the importance of baseball in the Dominican going into the trip, but it’s not easy to truly appreciate the country’s passion for baseball until you are on the ground there.  Virtually every young man who grows up in the Dominican plays baseball 2+ hours per day in the hopes of someday reaching the Major Leagues.

They gather every day at their local field, which is essentially a small open spot within a local neighborhood with some sort of a makeshift backstop and dugouts and a little bit of grass.  Their infields are riddled with rocks and the injury risk from stepping in an unexpected hole is always present.  But, they love it!

The FCA staff works at each field regularly, encouraging them and sharing the Gospel with both the players and coaches when the opportunity arises.  During the first few days of our trip, we traveled out to the various field locations and played catch, hit a few balls, shared our testimonies and had a lot of fun with the kids.  What struck us was that even though the kids obviously love the game of baseball, the motivation for most of them and the coaches is mainly financially driven. The potential of getting picked up by a major league academy and eventually a team to play for money is the main reason for most of the kids playing. That said, the opportunity for the FCA staff to grow Jesus’ name within these large groups is incredible and we were blessed to be a small part of their ministry. Mission organizations in the States would benefit from partnering with FCA in the DR.

In the evenings, our team organized and led the first ever Man Up and Go men’s conference in Boca Chica.  Each night, upwards of 60 coaches, pastors, and local leaders assembled for a great meal, fellowship, and fun activities, with a mind to sharpen one another as men in Christ’s name.

During these evening sessions, we covered the topics of “Why Jesus,” general leadership, marriage and family, sin, and the importance of prayer.  Each night was full of fun, encouragement, and powerful testimonies of what God has done in all of our lives (both Dominican and American).

As the week progressed, we had the opportunity to serve at orphanage after orphanage, which is always a huge part of our Man Up and Go mission trips. We played games, sang together, ate cake, made needed repairs to their facilities, and showed the kids what it’s like to have the love of both an Earthly and Heavenly father. We love to support the orphan when we do our missionary work overseas – nothing shows the love of Christ more than when we simply LOVE BIG!

The final component of this impactful trip was a visit with a ministry in Santo Domingo run by Pastor Kendar. Pastor and his wife run a church and have recently opened a school that works with families who live in a local trash dump community.  They are educating 75 sweet children who have no other access to schooling. We were able to tour the community, visit with the local people, share the Gospel, and pray over a sick child. The opportunity to serve alongside Pastor Kendar and his wife was something that our team will never forget.

Overall, the inaugural Man Up and Go Dominican Republic mission trip was an absolute success. We were able to inspire and educate men, love the fatherless, support single mothers, create new ministry partners, and have a ton of fun doing it.  We look forward to working in the Dominican for years to come!