Domestic Missions

There are people in need all over the world. This we cannot deny. At Eastern University, fliers advertising trips abroad are almost always taped to walls. It’s important to meet the needs of those in other countries, but to me, it sometimes seems like the needs of those in the United States-our own country-are overlooked. Domestic missions should not be taking a backseat to those abroad.

I will not start my argument for domestic missions by saying that mission trips abroad are less important. That is not the point that I am trying to make. I believe that mission trips to continents like Africa and Europe are extremely important. These places have so many needs and I think that it’s great if people are compelled to aid them. However, I do believe that in-country missions should receive a little more of our attention.

As important as it is to assist struggling countries around the world, it can be argued that it is just as, if not more, important to first improve our own country. The drug market in the United States is one of the most profitable trades worldwide. The incarceration rate in this country is the highest in the world. In the Unites States, an estimated 14,000 people are trafficked for sex and slavery each year. These are the same types of things that are happening in the different countries in which missions are so popular. With these same things going on in our own backyard, shouldn’t we be focusing more on our own country’s needs?

As I have said before, I’m not trying to bash missions abroad.

However, can’t the point be made that, in order to more effectively serve those in other countries, we should start by helping those in our own? Granted, a lot of countries are worse off than we are, but that doesn’t change the fact that our own country is in need. There are plenty of United States-based missions that are constantly requesting volunteers. For some people, doing missions close to home may make them feel like they are not making a big enough impact. It’s not the same feeling as traveling to another country, I understand. However, people in the United States need our attention too. Stepping over a state line might not feel like a big leap to many of us, but for the people we could be helping in this country, that step means the world.

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