We are called to share God’s love with the world. That means the people next door, across the state, and on the other side of the globe. At Advent, we take Jesus’ command to be witnesses to the ends of the earth very seriously. In addition to supporting global missions as a part of our United Methodist connection, we actively support more hands-on efforts. We send out multiple groups per year in international missions, and one of our four primary missions of the church--we call them Cornerstone Missions--is Full Dimensions Ministries in Tanzania.
You can read more about individual efforts below. But, don’t just read about them. Come, go on the journey of a lifetime!
In 1995, Advent UMC provided Pastor William Makali with $5000 and a promise of continued support as he returned to his childhood home in Tanzania to bring the word of Jesus Christ to his people after completing his Masters of Divinity degree at Erskine College.
Recognizing that Jesus calls us to feed the hungry and care for the sick, as well as share our faith, Pastor Makali set out to develop medical support and preschool education and children’s meal program. In 2004, Advent Member Jerry Warren founded Full Dimension Ministry (FDM) USA as a not-for-profit organization to help support Pastor Makali. William, Jerry and Advent and Mauldin UMCs have worked together to build a medical clinic, a preschool, a fresh water well, and support buildings for FDM.
In 2013, Advent also helped initiate efforts to eradicate Rabies in the Yulansoni Valley. Rabies kills 25,000 people in Africa each year. In 2014, Steve Hendrix, member of Mauldin UMC, moved to Tanzania as FDM USA’s first full-time missionary directing the daily operations of the mission in conjunction with Pastor Makali.
Advent sends mission teams to Tanzania on a regular basis, generally every three years. In 2013, a team of 11 (8 from Advent) led Bible School and conducted seven rabies clinics throughout the Valley. In 2016, a team of 11 conducted 8 rabies clinics, led Bible School and worked on the structures of the mission. To date, over 2000 dogs have been vaccinated in the Valley.
To learn more about FDM, visit: http://www.fulldimensionministry.com or contact Gary Hyman, Dan Randall, or Jim Tindal (Advent Members who serve on the FDM board).
Cuba is a beautiful country with a high rate of poverty. Christianity is on the rise in Cuba and the United Methodist Church of Cuba is doubling every four years! Since 2009, a United Methodist Volunteers in Mission (UMVIM) team travels yearly to Cuba from Advent UMC. In 2016, Advent UMC became a sister church to Iglesia Methodista de la Boca de Camarioca. Advent supports our sister UMC financially, in addition to praying for our sister church and sending teams.
For more information on the Cuba missions, contact Jeff Braeunig or Paul Webb.
In the summer of 2013, Advent UMC sent its first-ever, all-Advent, international, mission team to Panajachel, Guatemala to work with the United Methodist Volunteers in Mission (UMVIM) ministry Mission Guatemala. Tom Heaton, a United Methodist Pastor from Indiana, started Mission Guatemala in 2009. Mission Guatemala exists to help the poor of Guatemala and has a mission site in San Andrés that includes a medical clinic, dental clinic, and preschool/nutrition center. Advent UMC sends two teams yearly including a February team and a summer team for the graduating class. In addition, Advent supports financially the Becas con Misión scholarship program of Mission Guatemala.
Rise Against Hunger is a terrific way to participate in hands-on international missions without ever leaving the country. By partnering with Rise Against Hunger through financial support and hosting packaging events, Advent helps provide food in destitute places around the world. Since 2011, Advent UMC has been a part of packaging 1.3 million meals!
Learn more about Rise Against Hunger on their website or contact Leigh Randall.
The Sewing Ministry of Advent began with a call in the life of an Advent member. She and many of her friends sew and there was a need for pillowcase dresses and shorts for one of Advent’s international mission teams. The Sewing Ministry was born out of that call and need! The sewing ministry provides pillowcase dresses and shorts for children in Tanzania and Cuba and blankets for babies in Guatemala. For more information, contact Nanci Istock.
Operation Christmas Child is a ministry of Samaritan’s Purse, a nondenominational evangelical Christian organization providing spiritual and physical aid to hurting people around the world. Since 1970, Samaritan’s Purse has helped meet needs of people who are victims of war, poverty, natural disasters, disease, and famine with the purpose of sharing God’s love through His Son, Jesus Christ. The organization serves the church worldwide to promote the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ. Advent participates in the shoebox ministry. For more information contact Susan Hopkins or Jennifer Yarbrough.