Another wonderful opportunity is developing for foreign field missionary member care workers, pastors, and those who support missionaries and other Kingdom workers—the NCF Counseling and Member Care Seminar planned for October 4-16, 2015, in Chiang Mai, Thailand. This seminar has been held in Antalya, Turkey for the past two years. This year we return to Thailand and look forward to the participation of several clinicians from Cornerstone Counseling Foundation in Chiang Mai.
Many missionaries today work in dangerous and difficult political and social environments. Too often we hear of missionaries who become traumatized and burned out by the stresses in their environment. Those who provide care for these precious people may experience secondary trauma as they come alongside and hear the stories of deep wounding along the way of service for the Lord and His Kingdom.
Most of the seminar attendees are experienced missionaries who have assumed a frontline role for their organization to help their field personnel maintain resiliency and thrive. They listen and support, counsel, pray, and proactively engage with them and their families to provide holistic care.
want to attend: A single member care provider writes succinctly: I want to look at the challenges of working with cross-cultural relationships (including parent-child), overcoming shame to engage in counseling (cultural and faith-based), dealing with cross-cultural stress in a healthy manner, dealing with cross-culture induced anxiety, and learning to work with organizations other than my own.
The heart and soul of the Counseling and Member Care Seminar is to help these helpers—to assist them to understand and heal wounds they may have personally experienced, and to give them the crucial information and training they will need to effectively care and support their field staff.
We have already accepted a number of people for the seminar. Here are some of the reasons they state on their applications for why they
Listen to this member care provider’s heart cry: I want to be able to foresee signs of stress in our staff and know how to respond to those needs; to be more proactive rather than always having to be reactive. We have had to deal with just about everything as managers (i.e., anger issues, immorality, sudden death of staff member, etc.) and have always come through these events/issues ok…I want to come out of these times thriving, not just surviving. I see so many needs or ways I can speak into our staff's lives but when is it appropriate to speak and when is it appropriate to just keep my mouth shut? My tendency is to keep my mouth shut for fear that the other person will feel I am overstepping my boundary and meddling. I want to be sensitive to others but also know when it is appropriate to "meddle" for the health and welfare of that other person AND of my team. How do I overcome that fear?
A leader writes: I hope to gain insight into identifying staff issues and evaluating the need for care. It would be helpful to have tools to help evaluate where an individual is and what type of care is needed. For example, are these stress signs I notice in a staff person an indicator of serious issues or will time and vacation heal and renew? I'm hoping to simply acquire tools to care for my team better than I do now.
| As you can see, member care providers struggle with a variety of concerns and uniquely difficult circumstances. They long for help and training on how to better care for others and for themselves. To meet their needs, NCF provides highly skilled, experienced professors and instructors who are also sensitive, caring clinicians willing to spend countless hours in private consultation and counseling with those who desire it.
We need your help to make this training possible. NCF charges attendees enough to cover their room and meals, with a small amount toward expenses. The seminar fees do not cover the travel costs of the 11 U.S. staff to travel to Thailand or the lodging costs of all 15 staff. Each staff member—six with doctoral degrees and seven with Masters’ degrees—donates his or her time and expertise. While we strive to keep the seminar fee affordable to missionaries, attendees regularly report to us that their sending organizations are steadily reducing the amount of funds available to them for such training. Some must use vacation time to attend.
Would you please consider donating $1,000 for a scholarship to enable one single missionary member care worker to obtain this highly sought after training or $2,000 for a couple to attend? If you are blessed with the means to provide a larger donation to enable several missionary member care workers to attend, we would be delighted to receive your gift on their behalf. We are always thankful for gifts of any amount—there is no gift too small or too large!
Please bring the needs of our missionaries to the Lord in your prayers. Ask the Father to bless the staff who are developing their presentations to engage these precious caregivers. May God also bless you with conviction and joy as you consider if you are able to help us in any way.
Joyfully serving our Resurrected Savior with you,
Tim Hibma Cindy Hibma
Tim Hibma Cindy Hibma
P.S. Did you know: Six percent of missionaries worldwide leave the field each year. Of those, 50% leave for potentially preventable reasons! Thank you for your donation for this member care seminar to help NCF reverse these trends. (Source: ReMAP II—Retaining Missionaries—Agency Practices, World Evangelical Alliance, 2010)
NOTE: Donations can be sent on the NCF secure website via Credit Card: Click HERE to send support online, or use the link below. Or they can be be phoned in via Credit Card, or sent by snail-mail to the NCF office at the address below.
Phone in to 1-800-477-5893, or
Mail to the:
Narramore Christian Foundation
P.O. Box 661900
Arcadia, California 91066-1900
NOTE for U.S.A. residents: Narramore Christian Foundation is registered in the State of California as a non-profit 501 (c) (3) tax deductible organization.