By Bill MacLeod, Executive Director
Our annual STM ConneXion event was last weekend, and we were surprised at all we learned!
In a year when the Covid-19 virus has had most States on some kind of restriction; many if not most Churches not meeting in person, and individuals dubious to travel unless absolutely necessary – one would think that an event focused on doing Short Term Mission trips more effectively would best be postponed or cancelled altogether…right?
Well, not exactly…
First, our attendance was off the charts! Based on respondent’s feedback, we exceeded our largest STM event attendance previously, with over 260.
- Early indications are that over 50% appear to be first timers as well!
- 65% heard of the event through Mission ConneXion or SOE (Standards of Excellence in Short Term Missions).
- If you missed, go to www.stmconnexion.com; click Workshop Videos 2021, enter STMC2021 into the Guest Area.
Second, our reach was also exponential with:
- 28 States (in descending order: WA, OR, MT, CA, CO, TX, KN, MO, OK, AR, MN, WI, IN, MI, OH, KY, TN, NC, SC, VA, MD, IL, HI, NJ, GA, AL, LA).
- 11 Countries (In descending order: USA, Mexico, Guatemala, Jamaica, Ecuador, Canada, Rwanda, Nigeria, Meghalaya, Hong Kong, Belize)
Third, leaders came out in droves:
- 65% do missions as part of their jobs.
- Over 55% were between the ages of 35 to 54.
- 96% said they plan to implement what they learned from the conference.
As we look ahead toward what 2021 will bring, I am encouraged with what these results show us. I see a Church that is still very much committed to fulfilling its Great Commission calling. I see leaders who are hopeful, ready to move beyond the lockdowns, preparing to lead their people into the risk/reward nature of missions. I see Mission ConneXion very much still, by God’s grace and with His help, given an opportunity to help shape and lead that resurgence.
May we all be those who put faith over fear, and, like the renowned men of Issachar:
“From the tribe of Issachar, there were 200 leaders of the tribe with their relatives. All these men understood the signs of the times and knew the best course for Israel to take.” – 1 Chronicles 12:32