A FREE missions trip for your youth group

OnlineMissionsTrip.comYesterday I wrote about why I’m abandoning outreach events and gave several reasons why “outreach campaigns” may be a more effective solution.

For several months now I’ve been planning an outreach campaign for my own youth group and am excited to have other youth groups join us! The best part is that it’s completely FREE! We’ll be going all over the world, sharing the gospel with friends both in our local neighborhoods and friends far away. It’s an online missions trip, a “missions trip to Facebook,” if you will.

The Internet has never made it so easy to share Christ with those all over the world! Teenagers spend a crazy amount of hours talking with friends on Facebook, MySpace, YouTube, World of Warcraft and other such social hangouts online about things that don’t really matter in light of eternity, let’s train them to share their faith and push them to do it online. The Online Missions Trip is a 2-week campaign to empower them to use social media to share Christ with their friends who don’t yet know Him.

The structure looks like this:

January whatever-31, 2009

Pre-trip training. Use youth group meetings to train kids how to share their faith, think through the Online Missions Trip concept, and start praying for unsaved friends.

February 1-14, 2009

Online Missions Trip! During these two weeks teens and youth leaders are engaging in spiritual conversations with unsaved friends online. They’re uploading videos, photos, posting links, using status updates to share what God’s doing in their lives, writing notes, sending messages, posting on blogs, creating event invites to youth group, and anything else that will bring God up in a conversation that starts online and hopefully spreads to a face-to-face discussion.

February 15-whenever, 2009

Outreach event/series and new-believer follow-up starts. Follow-up on this missions trip with a series that helps the new teens in your ministry either investigate Christianity a bit closer or start growing in their new faith. Be sure to follow-up one-on-one with new converts, as well.

To learn more about this trip, visit There are many ideas, free resources and tools, a 24/7 Prayer Room, a Facebook app you can use, and more. It also has a video of me explaining the trip in more detail.

While you’re there, join the Facebook Group and meet some of the other teens and youth leaders who will be attending this missions trip with you in February.


Thanks to YouthBytes, Dare 2 Share Ministries, and Xtreme Youth Alliance for their support, promotion, and free resources for the Online Missions Trip! Thank you Brian Ford and Michael Rothermel for all your help in creating content and tools for this missions trip that will bring teenagers to Christ! And thanks Janelle Painter for designing the Online Mission Trip logo!

Posted on December 10, 2008

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  • Very cool idea. I don’t know how much my own kids would get into this, but it’d be worth sharing!

  • Will we be able to follow any of the activity~?


  • @Ed: That’s a good question. I honestly had not thought of that. Even if I had, I’m not sure how it would be possible to track conversions and conversations, especially since most of them will be private online or even face-to-face. The best way I know of to track it is to just ask youth workers afterwards.

  • Brilliant, brilliant, brilliant!

    I’d love to say that I’d been thinking of organising this, but it’s not true! Mission through existing friendships and networks by using social technology just makes so much sense. I’m not sure our church group in the UK can tie-in with the dates you’ve suggested, but we’ll do it anyway.

    As for tracking the impact of this, you should get people to tag all videos, links, conversations, tweets etc. with a unique identifier. That way we can use google and various rss aggregators to follow what’s happening globally. How about ‘digitalmission’ or ‘missiontrip’?

  • @Jon Jolly: Glad you like the idea and we’re happy to have you join us, especially from the U.K.!

    I’m not sure I really want people tagging everything with a unique identifier. I’d rather it feel as private and confidential for our unbelieving friends as possible. Tracking statistics isn’t as important to me as authenticity and feel like, “I’m just another number that’s being tracked by a religious organization.” I’ll probably just ask for feedback from youth workers at the end of the trip.

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  • That’s a fair point Tim. ‘Tracking’ outcomes to the mission is very likely to put people off engaging with it.

    On a different note, will you be posting resources for the training? Things like how and why to share your faith would be great.

  • Oops. Just had a closer look at the site and seen there are training materials there already!

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  • @Jon Jolly:Yeah, there’s a lot of resources at the site already, but we’ll be adding more and more as we lead up to the trip.

  • Just an FYI, this is a great idea- linked it up on my blog.


    With all humility to you the organisers, have been taken a keen look at the internet , i am pleased to inform you that i will like to attend any of your futuire programmes.

    I will be however be greatful if my request meet your kind approval.

    Thankls in anticipation.

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