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Meetings You Should Have before Your Mission Trip

Pre-trip meetings are crucial to preparing for a mission trip. These meetings will provide important information about your trip, so you will want to strongly encourage (or even require) your team members to attend. But these meetings should also be fun and build community. Team-building games and activities are a great way to do both at once.

Don’t try to fit too many things into one meeting. Instead, space the information out over monthly meetings, beginning three to six months before your trip. Plan for each meeting to last between an hour and 90 minutes. Pray for the Holy Spirit to bring new spiritual growth to your team at every meeting, and remember to pray for your mission partner and their community as well.

Here are some suggested activities for six pre-trip meetings, plus a couple final gatherings before your departure:

Meeting 1

  • Introduce each team member
  • Create a team covenant 
  • Have devotions
  • Discuss the vision for the trip and set expectations (for example, “We’ll work hard” or “We’ll build relationships”)
  • Do a team-building activity
  • Give an overview of the trip (for example, explain what your mission partner does and how you’ll come alongside their ministry)
  • Provide information about passports, immunizations requirements, and other travel necessities
  • Collect team member addresses, emails, and full names as written on passports

Meeting 2

  • Have devotions
  • Do team-building activities
  • Discuss a “typical” daily schedule during your trip
  • Discuss fundraising strategy and hold a letter-writing party
  • Choose team prayer partners
  • If needed, pass out any forms required by your church or organization (parental permission, release forms, etc.)

Meeting 3

  • Have devotions
  • Do team-building activities
  • Discuss trip accommodations
  • Discuss cultural awareness (language, cultural norms, gestures, food, etc.). Consider bringing in a missionary or other cultural expert, even by video 

Meeting 4

  • Have devotions
  • Do team-building activities
  • Discuss packing lists
  • Make sure all paperwork is turned in (forms, copies of passports, etc.)

Meeting 5

  • Have devotions
  • Do team-building activities
  • Discuss final details (flights, times, etc.)

Meeting 6

  • Have devotions
  • Hold a packing party
  • Remind team of any final details

Final gatherings

Want more trip planning support? Our short-term mission team would love to help.