Beth participated in her first international mission trip in March of 2020 when she received the unexpected opportunity to join her uncle’s small group on an IMN mission trip to Guatemala. Beth had only participated in one other mission trip that took place in Pittsburgh, PA, and she was excited at the prospect of going on an international mission trip.
Beth wanted to broaden her perspective by seeing how people lived differently than she did as a young woman from Northern Virginia, and she felt ready to step out of her comfort zone to gain a true understanding of day to day life in underdeveloped countries. This experience opened Beth’s eyes to the realities of the field of mission work in a new way.
During her trip Beth worked at a school to help with renovations and to build relationships with the students through playing games and sharing Bible lessons. Beth also helped deliver resources to families on house visits in the community. Beth was especially moved as she watched families invite her group into their own homes. When she was welcomed into the home of a family on the outskirts of Antigua, she was floored by the hospitality of mothers searching for chairs for their guests and children who were bursting with excitement to show her their rooms, their humble family kitchens, and the dried corn husks hanging from their metal ceilings. She had never experienced the eagerness of families who wanted to share all that they had without reservations, and she experienced great joy as she watched the love of God surpass language and cultural barriers.
While working in Guatemala, Beth and her teammates were introduced to several IMN missionaries. Beth cherished the depth of the interactions and conversations she had with the missionaries she served alongside, as they were so different from the interactions she experienced in her community at home. She was moved by the missionaries’ commitment to their callings and their communities, and it compelled her to seek to understand these things from a place of personal experience.
It was during this time that Beth learned about the IMN Apprenticeship Program. Beth was immediately interested in the potential of participating in the program so she could continue to broaden her perspective and grow deeper relationships with the communities she had begun serving in Guatemala. Upon returning to Virginia, she filled out the initial application with one of her new-found friends from her mission trip, and God opened the door for her to commit to a season of serving and growing her faith abroad.
Beth is very excited to join the IMN Apprenticeship Program! She plans on continuing her college classes during the Fall 2020 semester, after which she will begin her time in the IMN Apprenticeship Program in January of 2021.