Document Type


Publication Date

Winter 2017

Scholarship Domain(s)

Scholarship of Faith Integration


Over the course of the last few decades, short-term missions (STM) has invigorated and challenged the missionary enterprise around the world like no other movement. In fact, close to 1.6 million adults from the United States travel abroad every year on STM trips. During 2015, the Church of the Nazarene alone sent 618 short-term missions teams from the United States, including Work & Witness, University teams and Jesus Film Ministry teams. This effort involved the participation of 8,644 individuals who engaged in an intentional missional journey and stimulated missionary activity both at home and abroad. The magnitude of this movement is remarkable, one that without a doubt will continue to attract with renewed interest both new and experienced travelers alike.Although STM is currently a small part of a wide array of missional strategies, it is without a doubt one of the most noticeable and perhaps even the most appealing. Year after year, STM becomes an open invitation for youth groups, college students and church members to see the world first-hand and respond to the needs they encounter in tangible ways. For this reason, STM may be contributing to a new sense of “global citizenship” or what Sociologist Kersten Priest has called a “globalization of empathy.” This article discusses how to use STM for longer impact in missions.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.