Passport is Adventures in Missions' program for college-age (18-22 years old) individuals. Passporters spend 1-6 months securing their identity in Christ, getting equipped and growing empowered to advance God's kingdom alongside local churches and ministries overseas. In addition to sharing and living out the gospel, contending for justice on behalf of orphans, the poor, and the trafficked mark the ministry experience of Passport.
About the Passport Program
Going on missions with Passport, our program for college-age (18-22 years old) individuals, is, as the name implies, not just an ends but a means to more. Passporters spend 1-3 months on the field, where they secure their identity in Christ, get equipped and grow empowered to advance God's kingdom. In addition to sharing and living out the gospel in community, Passporters may be presented with the opportunity to seek justice on behalf of orphans, the poor, and the trafficked.
Passport has gone to countries all over the world, including Kenya, Swaziland, Uganda, Israel, India, Peru, Bolivia, Nicaragua, Thailand, Philippines, Tanzania, Guatemala, Mexico and more. Check out the upcoming trips to see where we're headed next!
Ministry looks different on every trip we offer. You can check out the trip descriptions to get an idea of what ministry might look like in each country. But we believe that ministry is a way of life, not just a daily assignment to complete. So we set up some options before you arrive, but much of your ministry is determined by asking the Lord what He is calling your team to specifically. You may see a need that we don't even know exists-and we want you to have the freedom to do something about that need! And remember, the most impactful ministry you're a part of might be the relationship that you build with your translator or the vendors at the market where you buy your groceries. Come with an open mind about what God has for you and you won't be disappointed!
It can be overwhelming to think of packing your entire life into a backpack or suitcase for several months.but we promise that it can be done! And you probably need a lot less than you think you will! Once you apply for a trip, you'll find a general packing list on your profile. We'll also send you additional trip specific items on your team blog.
You'll spend the first 2 1/2 days of your trip in Georgia to participate in Training Camp before you head to the field. During those few days you'll meet your team and leaders, and spend time getting ready spiritually, emotionally and physically.
Your trip cost includes all expenses once you arrive in Georgia. It covers airfare, food, lodging and transportation and gives you a ministry budget. Travels to and from Georgia and preparation expenses are not included. You'll find more information about support raising on your profile once you apply.
Many participants have successfully deferred student loan repayment while participating in mission trips with Adventures in Missions. For specific information relating to your student loan, please contact your loan provider. If your loan provider requests a letter regarding your participation in Passport Immersion, please let your Mobilization Representative know, and they can help facilitate that request.
Latest Blog Posts for Passport
Info for Parents about Passport
Many of the milestones have come and gone. You’ve watched them celebrate sweet sixteen, high school graduation and, for many of you, moving into dorms and onto college campuses. But no matter how many times you’ve said goodbye, the thought of sending them overseas to another country can still be a scary idea. We understand your need to make sure this will be a positive experience for them and to make sure their safety and security are a priority on the field.
We believe in your student and the impact they can make around the world. And we believe in you and the calling God has given you to help your student navigate through this world. We’ve put together a short resource to introduce you to Adventures and the Passport program and you can navigate through our website to find lots more information about our ministry. We want you to be confident this is a good fit for your student. But we also respect and honor the fact that your kids are growing up and growing into adults. That’s why we expect them to be the primary communicators with you. We expect them to meet their admissions deadlines, turn in their paperwork and ask their own questions. Somehow, God uses these trips into the nations not only to change the places they go, but also to grow them more and more into the person he created them to be. And we love getting to be a part of that.
As you cross yet another milestone with your students, know that we are cheering with you and believing God is going to do incredible things in and through them.
1. The reality is the world is sometimes unsafe. The Passport staff continues to stay educated and informed of safety concerns and issues around the world. We maintain active communication with our international contacts and have, on occasion, changed locations based on information from these sources. Changes are made with safety as our first priority even when this means changing an advertised trip. All of our leaders carry phones and are in weekly communication with each other and with our field support staff in case of emergency.
Your Passport participant signed up for adventure, so we cannot stop them from pushing their personal limits of safety. They have bungee jumped from high bridges in third world countries, rafted down rapids, and engaged in other activities that may make parents uneasy, but even in light of these extreme activities, we maintain a minimum level of social security. For example, there is always a mandate for them to travel together in groups. At the end of the day some risk is a normal part of the adventure and discipleship process.
Emergency Phone Number:
770-983-1060 (Adventures in Missions’ main number)
This number, which is the main phone line for Adventures, is monitored 24 hours a day. During business hours, simply ask for the Emergency Line. After hours, choose the “Emergency Line” option through the automated phone system, and your call will be routed appropriately.
Family members are welcome to call the number in the event of an emergency and the Field Support team will get in touch with the participant within 24 hours. Please use this only in true emergencies (e.g., a death in the immediate family). Do not use this to see if your Passporter is okay, if they have arrived at their new ministry site, or if you are just anxious for news.
Process of Initiation
We practice radical discipleship, and this involves a process. In our culture, young people often cannot remember the day they became adults. In most cultures around the world there is a process put in place by tribal and family leaders to facilitate this pivotal stage of development. Our young people struggle with feelings of being illegitimate adults because there is no rite of passage. The only option they feel they’re left with is rebellion that leads to a tearing away from their parents. That tearing away may take years to mend and heal. The Passport program offers a healthy option in the process of initiation.
Everything starts with a call to leave the old security and structure and lean into the challenge of moving into the unknown. They are asked to leave the rooms at home, their dorm, their apartments, and the comfort of current close relationships. They pack what they can in a suitcase and head to the other side
of the world. Their mission is the same as Abrahams: "get out of your country,
from your family, and from your father's house, to a land that I will show you"
This moving from the old leads into a season of insecurity and questioning. They can no longer rely on someone else’s belief systems or experiences. In order to make their faith their own they must be willing to embark on a treacherous journey of faith toward God. It is a transition and, although scary and painful, it is absolutely necessary.
Brokenness leads them to find faith molded out of their own experiences and creates a new dependence upon God. It’s a nerve-racking time to swing from one security net to the other. In the end, this new dependence and faith in God will serve them during this trip and for the rest of their lives. They will find themselves saying yes when God calls them to things previous generations have been afraid to embrace.
Communication will be limited.
You’ve given your sons and daughters the best years of your life; you’ve been there and provided for them. Because of this, you may feel entitled to some things from them in return. Truthfully, one of the most helpful things you can do now is to give them the space they need to find their own identity and faith.
While on the field there will be times when communication with the participants could be difficult. Internet can be scarce and slow. There may be times when we ask them to fully abandon distractions, including Facebook, Skype, and other means of communicating back home. This is done to help them fully engage in what they're experiencing on the field. We desire for them to move past the stages of abandonment and brokenness and into a deeper dependency upon the Lord. As possible, Passport participants will regularly update family, friends, mentors, and churches back home. Read their team blog posts and comment on them. This is more encouraging for your participant than you'll know. Participants are encouraged not to carry personal cell phones on the field. All of our leaders carry phones and are in weekly communication with each other and with our field support staff in case of emergency
Our leaders are young.
We employ World Race (an Adventures program for young adults to 11 countries in 11 months) and Passport alumni as leaders for the teams of five-20 participants. Their role is to care for the team, make sure the core values are practiced, and communicate between our staff in the States and the participants on the field. They will travel with the team and be on the field with them for the duration of their trip.
Our field support staff in the States contacts all leaders on the field weekly. There is ongoing leadership development that happens during these conversations. Mistakes are made; lessons are learned. It is, after all, the best leadership training. But our leaders must remain teachable or risk losing their position. Participants are also given an appeal process and are informed of the appropriate communication structure. We will always listen to concerns and encourage open communication, as well as respect of a chain of command.
You are in a position that requires you to trust.
Each Passport participant needs a word from God to go on this adventure. Ultimately, your parenting goal is to get them released from dependency upon your voice and become dependent upon his. (In the same way you trusted God on the first day of school and university, trust in God will be required throughout this process. We also ask that you extend trust to the Passport staff. We may not always do it the way you would do it, but we are working hard to do what's right. Please pray for us.)
Transition is hard for everyone.
The reality of the situation is that your Passport participant is not sequestered for 3 months. We expect that they would continually update family, friends, mentors, churches, etc. back home on a regular basis. With the limited communication ability in some areas of the world, it is likely you may get the short, condensed, and emotional updates from the field.
You may tend to hear more of the challenges than the victories, more of the discomfort than the growth, and more of the insecurity than the development of identity. Participants get sick, they experience conflict, they grapple with the loss of independence and they live in an environment that consistently examines their past hurts and scars. It is a process they will not find many other places because the process is messy. However, the process is necessary. It takes time, it takes pain, it takes trust. It is exactly what you may experience living half a world away from it all. Transition is a fact of life, but transition is hard. We believe running into the challenge has better results than running away. Choose to join us but count the cost.
Most participants come in with poor communication abilities. Safe communities where feedback (both positive and constructive) is a norm or where conflict is managed in a healthy way are not common in our society. We provide participants a community they cannot ignore (after all, they may be the only English-speakers in a given area on occasion). This approach reveals any self-entitlements they may hold close and provides them an immediate growth opportunity to learn humility and selflessness. This safe community is healthy, convicting, and necessary for the initiation process.
An overwhelming percentage of participants come in with poor communication abilities. They have not been in safe communities where feedback (both positive and constructive) is a norm or where conflict is managed in a healthy way. We provide them a community that cannot escape itself (after all, they may be the only English-speakers in a given area on occasion). This approach reveals any arrogant self-entitlements they may hold close and provides them an immediate growth opportunity to learn humility and selflessness.
Coaches, teachers, and authorities in each participant's life know growth does not come void of a challenge to change. Sports coaches would fail if they did not correct and re-correct skills needed to perform at greater competency. Subsequently, maturity does not come without feedback. Passport employs a method for honest feedback both from peers and leaders. The goal is to help participants reach their fullest potential as healthy adults.
Feedback is not an easy process to learn or to experience. You may be the recipient of your participant processing feedback they have received. Please do not rescue them. Just as if they were learning a sport, they will never progress unless they embrace the words they receive. Know also that this process is life giving and will change them not only for their trip, but a lifetime.
The presence of God
One of the foundations of our discipleship model is that every participant would break dependency on everything but the presence of God in their lives. The journey away from the familiar is imperative to this goal: they must journey away from the guidance of family, the security of friends, and the predictability of their everyday lives. They must learn to rely on their own pursuit of the things of God. Even if they’ve been taught good worldviews and theologies, they need to move beyond the spoon-feeding into new and deeper ways of thinking.
The voice of the Spirit
Throughout the duration of the trip, each participant will be expected to learn the discipline of listening prayer. If God truly speaks and gives us the ability to discern his voice, then a life of listening to the Spirit of God on all occasions and for every purpose is the best life possible.
Everything we do is rooted in the lifestyle practice of listening to the voice of the Holy Spirit. It is a new concept to most of the participants, but has life-changing results.
A constant challenge to mature
The shaping and molding of identity starts from the moment of birth. However, the ownership of this “shaping and molding” changes hands to each participant when he or she takes responsibility for his or her adult life. A participant’s own growth, destiny, and voice — everything is fed from assuming ownership. All participants will be treated as adults. They will all be expected to make decisions as adults, communicate like adults, and take responsibility as adults. If they are to change the world, they must be willing change themselves
While we may be meeting your participant for the first time at Training Camp, we genuinely have a desire for them to succeed and for this trip to be the best possible experience for them. The tools that we use are employed only because we want to see participants reach their fullest potential and the leaders we place on the field are committed to investing in each of the participants.
We read all the participants blogs, we pray for the teams regularly, we rejoice in their victories and mourn in their losses. While we may only spend a short time with them, we truly want to see greatness in them all.
Because communication from the field is limited, we are committed to keeping you informed in case of an emergency. In case your participant is seriously sick or in an accident, you will be notified within 24 hours. In case of an emergency in country (such as a natural disaster), the team leader will communicate with us as soon as possible that everyone is ok and we will in turn let you know immediately. We ask you to trust that since we will communicate with you as needed, 'no news really is good news.'
We also realize that life continues back here at home while your participant is on the field. Should you need to get in touch with your participant in case of an emergency at home, you can reach us at 1-800-881-2461. We will be able to reach the team within 24 hours.
Emergency Travel Arrangements
On rare occasions, there is a need for participants to return home early. This could be due to sickness on the field that we determine needs to be treated at home. This could be due to an emergency here that requires a participant to return home. It could be because a participant is unable to engage in the team or ministry on the field. Whether this is voluntary or not, we will work with you to rearrange travel plans and rebook flights if necessary.
How to Become a Missionary
Maybe you grew up seeing pictures of mud huts with thatched roofs, people with large objects pierced through their earlobes, or little children with dirty feet and ragged clothing, flies buzzing around their eyes. You heard stories of meetings where thousands fell to their knees to receive Christ as their Lord, where the blind could see, the deaf could hear, and the lame danced.
Or maybe this is completely new to you. Maybe you were going through ordinary life, living the American dream, and realized it wasn't enough. Or better yet, you had an encounter with God and couldn't look away. Suddenly, things that mattered before weren't as important. You knew that you needed to do something different. God called you to be a missionary.
Here are four steps to becoming a missionary:
The first step should be a practice for the rest of your life: prayer. Pray about the who, what, when, where, and why of this process. Pray for God's direction and the ability to hear what He is saying—and to be obedient to his leading. Pray for God to break your heart like his for the hurting and the lost. Pray, listen, and never stop.
The second step is to talk to the people closest to you, the ones who love you unconditionally and know you the best. Ask them what they think. Ask them to pray with you.
The third step is to talk to your pastor. Ask him for insight, and most importantly, if the church would be your sending church and would commit not only to praying for you weekly, but supporting you financially as well.
The fourth step is to decide what kind of work you would like to do, where you feel God is leading you, and with which organization you would like to go. Start asking the people around you about different sending missions organizations. Search online. Do your research. And through it all, pray.
Ultimately, the Lord will lead you.
If you are reading this article, we hope you will consider going with Adventures in Missions! We are an interdenominational Christian missions organization with a focus on discipleship. For more information, please contact us at: 1.800.881.2461 or fill out our application form.