Onramp is a one-week Grow2Serve online course designed to help you launch into your journey of healthy and fruitful cross-cultural life and ministry. The course asks you to invest 4-6 hours of learning time over an 8-day period.
There are some common challenges to getting started in ministry in a context not your own. This course directly addresses five of those:
- Connecting to your new context (place, customs and people) so that you will not only survive, but thrive.
- Entering into your new ministry team with humility, enthusiasm, and a servant heart.
- Understanding and finding your role in the specific ministry of the place and team to which you’ve been called.
- Getting on the road to good habits of lifelong learning, including purposeful learning of language and culture.
- Opening your heart to God as he molds you and grows you through this new stage of your life.
Are you ready for this journey? Don’t go it alone! Many have already trod this pathway and offer help and suggestions. Many are in the same stage of the journey as you, and perhaps you can lean on each other.
As a result of participating actively in the course, by the end you should…
- rejoice in the spiritual journey that God has you on and embrace the change and growth He is enacting in you.
- appreciate the importance of understanding and embracing your ministry context.
- be aware of the central elements of an effective ministry team and appreciate some key perspectives on entering a team as a new member.
- Be committed to actively and purposefully making decisions about your specific roles in the ministry you’ve been called to.
- understand some of the uniqueness of yourself as a learner and be aware of the breadth of learning that is needed for successful cross-cultural ministry.
- experience how important it is to onramp into cross-cultural ministry with the help of others.
Content, Community, Consultation, Connections
Onramp will afford you not just the opportunity to explore some interesting information regarding your first months in cross-cultural life and ministry, but, more importantly, it will connect you with others who are in a similar stage of life with you. You’ll be able to help each other and learn from one another. Your course facilitator(s) will also be a great resource for clarifying what you are learning and for providing input on assignments you will complete and discussions in which you will participate.
Is this Course for Me?
Onramp is designed for those who desire to live and minister well in a new cultural environment. If you’ve been settled into your place of ongoing ministry for 1-3 months and are committed to living and serving well in your cross-cultural context, this would be a good course for you.
Learning about Cross-cultural Life and Ministry – learn by doing!
The course creators and facilitators for this course are Mark & Julie Morgenstern. Mark, formerly the training director for ReachGlobal, is currently the director for continuing learning through the CIT Next ministry of Center for Intercultural Training. Julie is the operations director for Grow2Serve. She formerly served as a church-planter and pre-field training leader with ReachGlobal and in several senior leadership roles at South Suburban Evangelical Free Church.
Please note that for maximum learning impact in this course, a learner will ideally spend 30–90 minutes daily (Monday–Friday) working on the material. Some of the coursework will involve reading, writing, listening, and viewing videos on the computer. Other pieces will involve practicing the skills you are learning by interacting with your facilitator and other learners, and by engaging in your local community.