FAQS for Ministry Trips

  1. Why are these trips called ministry trips and not missions trips?

    When we study Scripture and ask the question, “What is God doing?” we arrive at a simple yet profound conclusion. He is and has been, since the inception of human history, in the process of redeeming and restoring all of creation back to Himself in and through Jesus Christ. This is called the Missio Dei–the Mission of God. Accordingly, there is but one mission–God’s–and we, as His people, are invited and even expected to join Him in that mission. As a result, there are not different missions or multiple missions. There is but one mission assuredly with different ways to express and to engage as well as means to fulfill. This is why we call trips to foreign lands ministry trips, not missions trips. The mission there is the same as it is here–to join God on His mission.

  2. What is the purpose of these trips?

    Basically, the purpose of these trips is two-fold. First, it allows for people here to engage with what God is doing in and through His people there, so that His mission can be accomplished. Simply stated, God’s purpose is for His people, the global church under the Lordship of Jesus Christ, to ensure in their context that every man, woman and child has repeated opportunities to hear, to see and to experience the gospel of Jesus Christ. We go to partner with the Church in distant lands to help them accomplish what God has called them into for that place, which is full saturation of the geography with the reality of the gospel. This can only be accomplished when all of God’s people in that place are mobilized. We then are there to help them, to equip them, to empower them, and to encourage them. We are not there to do all of the work for them but to enable them to accomplish that which alone they could not. Second, we go to grow. These trips allow us as followers of God to experience, learn and demonstrate the realities of our faith in new ways. In doing so, we grow in our faith as we exercise our giftedness, skills and abilities. As a result, we mature and are thereby conformed into a greater likeness of Jesus Christ which pleases God. Finally, our relationship with God is strengthened and deepened on these trips regardless of where we start.

  3. Do I need to fill out an application to go on a trip?

    Most trips that The Chapel sponsors will require you to fill out an application form of some sort. This form will most likely be distributed at the first information meeting. It may be helpful to make a photocopy of your application in the event you go on another trip in the future. Depending upon the country, focus of the trip and sponsoring ministry department, the exact application form may change.

  4. When and where are the next trips?

    All trips that The Chapel participates in and sponsors will be posted on the Kingdom Come website. Trips will be posted at varying times throughout the year and will be advertised in other media outlets like the bulletin on Sunday or The Chapel’s Facebook page. Each trip will have a contact person listed. If you are interested in an upcoming trip, please contact the person listed for that particular trip. You may also contact the Kingdom Come Ministry by clicking the “contact” section on the homepage.

  5. Do I need to be a member of The Chapel to go on a trip?

    Although Chapel sponsored trips will have many people who are members of The Chapel on them, you do not need to be an official member of The Chapel to go on most trips. If you have a question about this, please contact the person coordinating the trip.

  6. Do I need to be a Christian to go on the trip?

    In general, you do not need to be a professing Christian to go on a trip sponsored by The Chapel. However, if you are not, you need to recognize that the trips serve the purpose to advance the gospel of Jesus Christ in word and deed in these places. You will be welcomed, affirmed and expected to engage alongside others in an appropriate manner. If you are not follower of Christ, you will not be required to do some things that those who are Christ-followers will do but you will be required to do most of them. More specifically, to provide unity and proper equipping, team training and meetings will be required where Bible study and prayer take place. All team members are required to attend these gatherings and be respectful for those who present the Bible teaching and engage in prayer. However, no one is required to pray at these gatherings. Please contact the trip facilitator for more information.

  7. What should I expect on a trip?

    The trips that we take will assuredly stretch, tax and otherwise stress your physical, mental and spiritual metal. The days can and likely will be long and typically hot. Things are always changing so flexibility and being ready to go at a moment’s notice is the norm. The cultural context in which you are likely to find yourself can be overwhelming given the high physical and spiritual needs. As such, you will be faced with some realities that you likely have not been before, which will challenge your paradigms. Preparation is key. As such, most trips require and conduct training sessions prior to the trip so that those who go are better prepared to thrive during the trip, not merely to survive the trip.

  8. Is it safe?

    Travel regardless of where you go has inherent risk whether they’re trips to the grocery store or around the world. We endeavor to provide a safe environment for the people who go on these trips. Our on-the-ground ministry partners are well-versed in handling logistics and ensuring people are properly cared for while they are there. It is important for all who travel that everyone follows all directions, requirements and instructions once on the ground which will be given by the host partner. Specific questions along these lines can be directed to the trip facilitator.

  9. What do I need to keep in mind if I go on a trip?

    Perhaps the best advice is that the trip is about helping others. As such, putting the needs of others first is vital. Setting your mind on being flexible and willing to serve in whatever capacity are key to a successful trip for you and others. You are likely to be outside of your normal comfort zone on many fronts at the same time which will take some resolve to navigate. Being prepared and willing to adjust as necessary regardless of the circumstances are the hallmarks of a veteran trip-taker.

  10. How much do these trips cost?

    The cost of the trips that The Chapel offers are typically in the $1,200 to $1,600 per person range. This includes airfare and all on-the-ground accommodations. However, these figures are only estimates based upon previous trips. The destination and airfare costs vary and need to be verified. This information will be disseminated at the appropriate information sharing meeting for that particular trip. It should be noted that these costs are approximate and largely reflect the costs for a seven-day trip to Haiti or the Dominican Republic. A trip to Africa will be noticeably more, given airline and in-country transportation costs.

  11. How do I pay for the trip?

    It is incumbent upon the individual going to raise their own funding to pay for the cost for the trip. The Chapel does not pay for individuals to go on trips. However, The Chapel through its Kingdom Come funds may help offset project expenses or other trip related expenses depending upon the nature and purpose of the trip. The trip facilitator will be able to assist you with ideas and potential ways to raise enough funds for you to participate on the trip. These ideas may include group fundraisers, individual letters of support to friends, co-workers and family which by the way offer an excellent way to share your faith before, during and after the trip.

  12. Is there training associated with the trips?

    Typically, there will be training for each and every trip with some or all of it being required. If you have been on other trips, you still may need to attend all or some of the training for the particular trip in question. The trip facilitator will be able to give you guidance as to what the requirements are for that particular trip. Again, given the trips change in their nature and specific purpose, training is important to ensure all who go are well prepared.

  13. How long are the trips?

    Most of the trips that The Chapel takes are seven days in duration which includes travel to and from the country in question. Some trips are longer given the travel time may be more extensive like Africa. In addition, the exact days as in when during the week varies given best airline tickets and on the ground partner logistics.

  14. Do I need a passport or visa to go on this trip?

    Most of the places where The Chapel is currently engaged require a passport. A good rule of thumb is that if an international plane ticket is involved a passport is needed. In addition, a visa may be needed to enter the country. Again, your trip facilitator will know what is required for each trip. If you do not have a passport, you can obtain the necessary application forms online or at your local post office. Please allow three months for the entire process. An entrance visa requires adequate lead time as well and requires your passport to be submitted to the applicable embassy for approval along with the necessary paperwork.

  15. Do I need shots or preventative medicine?

    The best answer to this question is for you to consult with your primary care physician as to what he/she recommends given your situation and the country in question. In general, preventative medicine depends upon the country but the likelihood of you needing something is high. Tetanus shots, Typhoid, Yellow Fever, Hepatitis A/B are some of the potential vaccinations you might need. Your doctor might recommend anti-malaria medication or other medications. In addition, some of the countries and/or trips have mandatory vaccinations. Your trip facilitator will inform you of these requirements. Immunizations, vaccinations, and prescriptions can be obtained at local travel clinics which may or may not accept your insurance but are typically available on short notice. For the WNY region there is a travel clinic at ECMC.

  16. What should I bring with me?

    You should bring all essential medications, toiletries, and other personal belongings with you. These items should be in your carry-on luggage—please do NOT put them in your checked bag. Kindly refer to the airline’s website as to their restrictions and regulations regarding carry-on baggage. Certain items are not allowed and liquids need to be in certain quantities or less. As far as checked baggage goes, there are weight limits and size limits. Please check with the airline in question. Your trip facilitator will also have some information along these lines. You might also want to consider bringing earplugs, insect repellant, sunscreen, hand sanitizer, wet wipes, tissues and a hat for shade. It is also good to check the weather forecast for the place in which you are going just prior to departure. Pack accordingly. Umbrellas and jewelry are not recommended. You may also want to bring some extra money for food while in transit and for souvenirs. A color photocopy of your passport is recommended in case you lose your original. In addition, make sure your luggage is clearly labeled. The trip facilitator will likely give you a packing list at some point during the training which will be helpful for you to plan. It is also advisable to bring a camera—the smaller the better and disposable. In addition, a Bible and journal to document what you did, saw, learned and experienced are must haves.

  17. What kind of clothes should I bring?

    Your trip facilitator will help you make these decisions. It also depends upon what you will be doing while you are on the trip. Typically, the trips The Chapel goes on are to warmer climates. As such, lighter clothing is advisable that can get dirty, wet and dries quickly. A nicer outfit might be required if there is a religious service the team is attending or helping to facilitate. A good pair of shoes that are comfortable for walking and that cover your toes is highly recommended and in most cases required. You do not need a complete change of clothing for every day. T-shirts, short-sleeved shirts, socks and undergarments, yes, but not over-shirts or pants/slacks/jeans. Please keep in mind that team members need to dress modestly. This doesn’t mean “frumpy.” However, “skinny jeans,” short-shorts, tight, low-cut, high hemline, see-through, or otherwise revealing apparel should be left at home.

  18. What kind of luggage should I take?

    Your luggage will likely go through some rough treatment between the airport transfers and transport to and from the place you are staying. As such, using luggage that is sturdy, older or made for extensive travel is recommended. Foreign airports do not have the same standards as it relates luggage handling as the USA even though you are on the same airline. Do not place valuables in your checked luggage. Any valuables need to be kept on your person or in your carry-on luggage. The Chapel is not responsible for lost or stolen luggage or personal valuables.

  19. If I am going on a trip is there transportation to/from the airport?

    The Chapel does not provide transportation to/from the airport for these trips. It is the responsibility of the person traveling to get to the airport in plenty of time per the trip facilitator guidelines. It is not uncommon for the trips to leave very early in the morning and return late at night. Given this, you may want to consider carpooling or having someone drive you.

  20. Are there different kinds of trips?

    Yes, there are different types of trips as in each will have a primary focus but may include other aspects. A medical related trip may have a smaller construction project associated with it and so forth. The specific nature of each trip will be listed on the website. Most trips will require people with a specific set of skills but there is usually a need for others to help and support the main purpose of the trip even if you do not have that particular skill. For example, non-medical people can still go on a medical trip to help set-up the clinics, pray with people, share the gospel with those who are waiting, clean-up and so forth. There is always plenty to do. If you have a particular question about a specific trip please contact the trip facilitator.

  21. How many people will be on my ministry trip?

    The size of the groups varies. Most have more than 10 people, but could exceed 50 depending upon what, who and where. It is likely that there will be others on the ground in the country in question from other parts of the United States or the world in some cases. This provides some interesting opportunities to hear how God is working in the lives of others.

  22. Where does The Chapel go?

    At present The Chapel is sending people with other churches in some cases to the Dominican Republic, Haiti and Sierra Leone. Our on the ground partner in the Dominican Republic is SCORE International (www.scoreintl.org). Our on-the-ground partner in Haiti is Mission of Hope Haiti (www.mohhaiti.org). In Sierra Leone we send people predominantly with Global Outreach Mission (www.missiongo.org) and Let Them LOL (www.ltlol.com).

  23. What kind of accommodations are there on these trips?

    Typically, we stay at a compound specifically designed to accommodate larger teams. These compounds are secure and have dorm room type arrangements. There is power and running water. Although, interruptions of these services is not uncommon. Food is typically prepared on-site. WiFi and internet service are likely not to be available. If you require these types of services, it is suggested you contact your mobile phone service provider and purchase a data pack for that particular country so you can use the internet. Most of the countries we visit have some level of mobile phone capability. It is strongly advised to check with your mobile phone provider prior to the trip to evaluate your options. Data roaming charges can be excessive if a pre-paid data package is not purchased. You can usually text in these places but the fees can be high and exceed $1USD per text message. It is a good assumption that you may not be able to stay in constant communication with friends and family while you are on the trip. It is a good idea to bring a journal with you so that you can write down your thoughts and experiences.

  24. What if I am asked to give money while on the trip by someone?

    Any inquiries you receive as a group or as an individual to buy or to give to something should be referred to the on-the-ground partner. Giving money to people may actually circumvent what our partner is trying to accomplish in that particular context in addition to setting a precedent for future trips.

  25. What if there is a medical emergency while on the trip?

    Most of the partners we travel with have emergency medical insurance in place in the unlikely event someone needs to be transported back to the States or taken to a reputable hospital. The fees for this insurance are typically covered in the overall trip cost. If you have questions about this, please contact your trip facilitator or inquire on the partner’s website for the trip in question.

  26. What is the typical schedule for a day while on the trip?

    The days are long but satisfying. Schedules may also change at the last minute. As a result, being flexible and alert is essential regardless of the activity or lack thereof. It is important to be ready to engage in whatever God is doing at that moment. If there is unexpected downtime, it is a great opportunity to get to know someone better or study God’s Word. A usual day starts early with breakfast and perhaps a devotion, followed by a briefing of what that day will entail, then the team is mobilized to that end. Lunch is somewhere in the mix perhaps on-site or off-site depending upon many factors; the afternoon might be the same as the morning or something different; evening will entail dinner and usually some sharing as to what happened that day. In sum, it is always changing and likely much different than the day before which makes it exciting.