Adventures in Missions
Ministry History

Adventures In Missions is a faith-based non-profit organization that was founded in 1986. Since its inception, the organization has been committed to providing meaningful and transformative mission experiences for individuals and groups. Over the years, Adventures In Missions has grown to offer a wide range of mission trip options, from short-term trips to year-long missions, serving people in need across the world. The organization is guided by its core values of respect, integrity, and compassion, and strives to empower individuals to make a positive impact in the world through serving others. Whether you are a seasoned mission veteran or a first-time traveler, Adventures In Missions provides opportunities for personal growth, spiritual development, and meaningful connections with others as you serve those in need and share the message of hope.
Adventures In Missions History

Our Mission Organization Ministry Timeline

Adventures In Missions has a rich history of providing transformational mission experiences to individuals and groups since its founding in 1986. Over the past 35+ years, the organization has continued to evolve and grow, offering an increasing number of mission trip options to serve people in need across the world. Some of the key milestones in the history of Adventures In Missions include:

Our Founding

Executive Director Seth Barnes founded Adventures in Missions. He worked out of his garage to lead nearly 1,000 youth to the mission field over the next three years.

Growing Demand

The demand for trips exploded and Seth moved Adventures from his home to a storefront office.

Ambassador Trips

The Ambassador program began, offering students ages 14-18 the opportunity to go on 2-4 week trips.

Mexico Base

The Gateway, the Adventures Mexico Base began reaching out to the people of Matamoros with food, clothing, diapers, and house construction.

Expanding Focus

Adventures expanded its programs beyond its original focus on youth groups, sending thousands of adults, families, and college students to minister around the world.


Adventures Eswatini Base opened its first Carepoint, a gathering place where orphans and vulnerable children are fed, educated, and discipled.

Global Pilgrimage

The World Race began as an idea that God gave Anna Marie Franken for young people to go on a pilgrimage around the world in order to understand and experience God personally, serve in communities in which they would have an impact, and leave behind a lasting contribution. She shared the idea with Seth Barnes, who began exploring the possibilities of what he conceptually saw as a race that featured competitive components, leaving behind both substantial fruit through church planting and tangible objects for future Racers to find.

World Race Launches

In January, the pilot World Race launched from Mexico and pioneered in regions all over the world, touching foot in over 20 countries. Partnered with South Africans, 22 Racers went on an 11-month experiment to figure out what it would look like to live out Luke 10. Literally knocking on doors and sleeping on streets, it was a raw adventure in faith. South African Anna Marie Franken traveled with the Racers while Seth Barnes, Andrew Shearmen, Gary Black, and Tom Davis taught and debriefed before and during the Race. Adventures Peru was also founded by church planting missionaries in Lima.

One Hundred Racers

Three squads launched in 2008, which totaled 111 Racers beginning in one year. Shifts of significant growth began to occur as Racers from this year continued to pioneer in southern Africa, the UK, and Eastern Europe. Alumni started returning as squad leaders.

Cause Oriented

The World Race started launching squads focused on specific causes or people groups, e.g. Spanish-speaking route or Human Trafficking route.

Parent Ministry

Parent Ministry launched, giving the parents of Racers a place to connect with each other and with Adventures in Missions.

Parent Vision Trips

Parents began going on Parent Vision Trips, where they visit their Racer on the field in months 6-8 of their Race and serve alongside them. Adventures Guatemala base launched in February. Long term missionaries there dove deep into ministry and led short term teams in community outreach. Adventures Philippines, along with long term partnership Wipe Every Tear, launched this fall and became a base for short term trips, alumni trips, Kingdom Journey trips, and Parent Vision Trips. The Center for Global Action (CGA) opened, an alumni program for discipleship, community, and activation. The Fellowship program began, a professional development program for World Race Alumni.

Kingdom Journeys

Kingdom Journeys sent out its first 6 month team. Gap Year launched, sending young adults ages 18-21 to three countries in 9 months. Adventures also celebrated 25 years in October.

Adventures Guatemala

Adventures Guatemala launched its first short term international team, sending a group of Americans and Guatemalans to Honduras. Seth’s dream of disciples making disciples is becoming a reality as our bases grow and expand. Adventures Mexico Base opened a trade school for 10 students from a local orphanage to learn welding and professional development.

A Decade of World Races

The World Race celebrated 10 years by launching six squads in January, including the first World Race: Expedition. Adventures Cambodia and Adventures South Asia also opened at the beginning of the year. Long term missionaries moved to both locations and are focusing on the best way to impact their local communities in significant, relevant, and lasting ways.
Mission Organization Timeline

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