From Global Missions to Missions Mobilization

By: Scott Armstrong

A change has been brewing for several months now in one of the ministries of the Mesoamerica Region.

For nearly two decades, Global Missions Mesoamerica has been Discovering, Developing, and Deploying (3D) Nazarene missionaries from our region around the world. Resources and trainings such as the Cross-Cultural Orientation, the School of Leadership, and Remi I and II for children have become well-known in many of our 33 countries. Short-term missions opportunities like Maximum Mission, Project Paul, 4×4: All Terrain, Play and Witness, and Called to Serve have mobilized thousands of volunteers. Dozens of long-term missionaries have been sent from the Mesoamerica Region to the ends of the earth, as well. The 3D ministry is alive and well, and any observer would be able to see that our churches and Nazarenes have come a long way in missions sending since the early 2000’s. Praise the Lord!

Starting today, Global Missions Mesoamerica will have a new name and a new look. Although very little of the actual day-in day-out ministry will change, going forward we will be known as Missions Mobilization. Here are four reasons why this innovation will fit us better and assist us in more effectively accomplishing the mission that the Church of the Nazarene has put in our hands:

  1. Missions Mobilization describes what we do. Let’s start with the most obvious reason. For a ministry that finds, equips, and sends out ministries, Global Missions is an imprecise name. When the average pastor or congregant first hears that title, do they know what the ministry is about? In general, they could assume that we are involved in missions around the world, but almost all the ministries within our same denomination could say that. Missions Mobilization states exactly what we do in a concise way: we mobilize the Church in missions. Although we collaborate with dozens of other ministries to do so, WE are the arm of the denomination that has been tasked with raising up new missionaries for the cross-cultural harvest.
  2. This new branding allows our region to come into alignment with the rest of the denomination. Global Missions is the umbrella term for almost all that goes on in missions in the Church of the Nazarene. The denomination’s Global Missions Director, Dr. Verne Ward, along with his team of employees, oversees everything from missionary care to disaster response to vision and strategy of church planting in 165 world areas. And yes, a multitude of other things, too, including mobilization of new missionaries. For the past ten years, the only region that has named their 3D ministry Global Missions has been Mesoamerica. It’s hard to rationalize the redundancy of a Global Missions ministry within another Global Missions ministry. What does our denomination (and many other missions agencies around the world) call our ministry? Missions Mobilization. For clarity’s sake, it’s time for a change.
  3. The name will be more easily distinguished from NMI, while maintaining some necessary connections. In many countries, Global Missions has been repeatedly confused with Nazarene Missions International. If NMI is “international,” and GM is “global,” what’s the difference? What does GM do that NMI doesn’t? Obviously, there are plenty of answers to that last question, but the point is that the GM name has not helped to even begin to describe the contrast. Keeping Missions (or Missionary in some other languages) in the new name maintains the connection with NMI and shows that our ministry can do very little without them. At the same time, adding Mobilization distinguishes the two ministries in a much clearer way.
  4. The change of logo (not just name) will describe the essence of the ministry much better. In a few days, I will dedicate some time to introducing the Missions Mobilization logo and rationale behind it, but for now I can say that it is the result of hours of conversations and back-and-forth with our Communications team. It’s embarrassing to admit, but that was not the case with our previous Global Missions logo. Years ago, we looked for fonts and colors that we liked, combined it with an icon of a globe, and were satisfied. You may like the old name and logo more than the new one. You may not. But I think you’ll see that the new logo has incorporated the ethos of our ministry in a much better way.

If you’re reading this on the day it is being published, you are one of the first to know about this change. From here on out we are the M&M team (break out some of the famous candies to celebrate!). We have changed our social media handles and pictures. Today I switched my signature on all emails to say Regional Missions Mobilization Coordinator. The name and logo have changed. But the mission remains the same. Would you pray for us as we continue to Discover, Develop, and Deploy thousands of missionaries in the coming decades from Mesoamerica?

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