ISMK & MKS
- The number one reason that missionaries leave the field is their kids
- 80% of MKs do not have a youth/children’s pastor. The role of pastoring all MKs is ISMK.
- MKs make GREAT missionaries. They do amazing reaching the kids where God has placed the family
- Phillips support the MKs from EVERY District, in EVERY region of the world
- By investing in the Phillips’, you are investing in every missionary family
Missionary Kids (MKs) are an important part of the world missions program of the Assemblies of God. The MK program includes approximately 1,390 missionary kids from birth through age 22. All are or will face major adjustments as they leave behind the familiar to go to the unfamiliar. We have found that MKs handle these adjustments better if we offer them a sense of meaning and purpose regarding their role in the missionary family.
First, ISMK EQUIPS MKs as missionaries called to reach their own generation. We assist with cultural training, education, retreats, discipleship, and life transitions. Missionary families are more effective if the children are equipped educationally, emotionally, and spiritually to handle the challenges they will face.
Second, ISMK ENGAGES MKs completely in missions. They are an important part of the missionary family of Assemblies of God World Missions. MKs are engaged in discipleship and in missions. MKs handle adjustments better if we offer them a sense of meaning and purpose regarding their role in the missionary family, understanding that God calls the entire family not just the head of the household.
Third, ISMK ENABLES parents to fulfill their missions calling by providing support in an area where a missionary family is often vulnerable. When an MK struggles with educational, cultural, and spiritual adjustments, the parents’ energies are divided between ministry and the well-being of their family. We provide discipleship and resources specifically designed for MKs to help them through transitions. By helping MKs establish an identity rooted in Christ, we not only free parents to do their ministry effectively but also multiply their efforts by encouraging MKs to share in their family’s vision for missions.
WHAT DOES ISMK DO?
- Candidate School – Cultural, spiritual, and educational preparation for new MKs heading overseas. Approximately 100 new MKs go through each summer. (2 weeks, annually)
- Missionary Renewal – A spiritual renewal for MKs returning from the field. Each MK will come through this program once every 4 to 5 years. Approximately 300 MKs will attend annually, with 70 MK staff. (1 week, annually).
- Reentry – A program designed to help MKs reenter the American culture after having spent years in other countries. (4 days, annually)
- Thanksgiving Retreat – Retreat for college-age MKs held over the Thanksgiving holidays. Most parents are still overseas for this family holiday, while their kids are stateside in college. (4 days, annually)
- Regional Retreats – Each region will hold a retreat overseas. Some regions have annual retreats, some have retreats every 3 years. ISMK is invited to lead the MK ministry at many of these retreats. (3 or 4 retreats annually, 3 – 5 days each)
- MK Care – ISMK sends gifts, birthday cards, Christmas cards, and quarterly newsletters to our MKs, reminding them that someone is there for them. Each item is age appropriate and sensitized for the region in which the MKs are living.
- Discipleship – ISMK is discipling MKs via the internet in over 40 countries around the world, through an online, small group system. For more information, see FIRED UP on the ISMK website (www.ismk.org).
- Education Counseling – Most places where missionaries live have education systems that are radically different from the United States; if there is even a school available. ISMK helps from pre-field preparation to on-field troubleshooting. We provide a multitude of resources and reentry tips for adjustment to American schools.
- Parental Support – ISMK is a constant resource to parents for anything relating to their children.
I think we can all agree that 2020 has been a year like no other. For me personally, it has been a season of slowing down and reflecting on God’s goodness. I’ve