What is your plan to lead your students in missions? Domestic and International Mission trips are two amazing ways to model for your students how they should view and interact with the world. Seeing my youth give of themselves to the poor in Brazil was something that would change how I viewed missions for the rest of my life. We think of missions as an option. But Jesus did not tell us in Matthew 28:19, "Therefore go and make disciples of all nations... if its convenient, if you have the extra money, if it doesn't take you away from, (insert whatever sport, activity, or event that is commonly used as an excuse). Jesus simply said "go".
As the student pastor, it is your responsibility to teach and lead by example. First, plan local mission opportunities, then gradually move the mission opportunities further away from home. Since we live close to New Orleans, LA, we do a lot with the homeless population in the downtown area. I know the staff at several of the shelters in New Orleans and have taken my students to serve meals and to interact with those in the shelter on many occasions. I have found that my students love the interaction and opportunity to meet the physical needs of others when they are given the chance. Not many families or schools will take them to places like that to have such amazing experiences. One young lady said to me in the French Quarter a few years ago, "I never knew these people were here." I told her that these men and women have always been here. Her response was, "I didn't pay attention to them before, but now I will." What an awesome thing to hear as my student has her eyes opened to ministry opportunities like that. Just one hour from our home with so many hurting. And yes, even in our city, many, many opportunities to serve and introduce people to Jesus. Remember, many "good" people serve the needy. We, as Christians, are called to serve them in the name of Jesus. Be sure they know the Who behind the what.
This summer, our students are going to Haiti. No, we do not have a missions budget to support this trip. 100% is being paid for through fundraising. Taking the gospel to the world takes money, but God has called us to do it. I hate fundraisers, but I'd hate to look at Jesus and say well, I didn't want to do fundraisers to go take your message where You told me to go, so we stayed home instead.
There are many different missions organizations you can use to help put together the trip you need for your students. When you work with the local missionary, sometimes they do not know the details like a missions organization would, such as Praying Pelican Missions. PPM takes care of every detail once you are on the ground in the country where the mission trip will take place. If you are not yet the pro you hope to become with trip planning, consider using an organization that takes care of everything for you. You will be glad you did. PPM video below.