Posted by: Brandon | October 12, 2009

Reverse Missionary Work

A lot of people ask me the question: “So, what is it that you do, exactly, in campus ministry?”

My answer usually, “I do reverse missionary work.”

Most folks are familiar with the concept of missionary work. We send a certain person to a far-away land to learn the culture and learn the language and create relationships with people in the hopes of, one day, earning the opportunity to share the Gospel.

In campus ministry, we do the same thing. We have to learn the campus culture and learn the language the students speak. We have to create relationships with these students in the hopes of, one day, earning the right to share with them the Gospel.

There is only one difference: instead of sending us to a far-away to do these things, our “mission field” comes to us. Every August, they move in right across the street from our house.

And, there’s more. It’s an “if…then” statement:

IF we are successful in learning the culture and the language and if we are successful in creating the relationship and sharing the gospel and bringing these students into a relationship with Christ…

THEN we can send them home after college to be missionaries. This could be to urban areas or rural or areas or anywhere in between. It could be to closed foreign countries, if you connect well with international students.

Once I explain campus ministry in this context, the light usually comes on for folks. I especially find it helpful when visiting churches, as most churches have adopted and understand the way traditional missionary work is done.

If you still haven’t read it, Benson Hines spent a lot of time talking about campus ministry as missionary work in his book, “Reaching the Campus Tribes.” I seriously don’t know what you are waiting for!



  1. I am glad to read that you were able to go to Catalyst 09. I caught a tweet saying you needed tickets.
    May the Lord bless you in your work!

    • Kathleen,

      Thanks! Yeah, I actually already had my ticket for Catalyst…I was looking for a buddy. But either way, Catalyst was quite the experience!

  2. […] So…head over there and read my post. […]

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