We’re Going to Toronto!

It’s been a long two weeks since we canceled our planned-for missions trip to Tijuana, Mexico.  Many of us have been praying diligently for God to clearly show where He wants our team to serve.  I (Pastor Mike) have knocked on many doors, sent many emails and made a number of phone calls – but none of them seemed to go anywhere.

Center for Student Missions is a wonderful ministry whose mission is “to provide an effective urban ministry experience that transforms lives, influences churches and communities, and honors Christ.”   I am really impressed by CSM’s desire to plug Christians in to serve through local ministries in diverse, multicultural urban settings.  CSM comes very highly recommended to my by Youth-Pastor friends of mine, I’m very excited for us to be partnering with them in ministry this summer!

Check out the following two videos: the first is about CSM (in general) while the second is specifically about their work in Toronto (where we’ll be serving!)

What are the basic trip trip details?

  • Dates: August 1-7, 2010 (same as planned before)
  • Cost: $800-900… I’m still working on this, but it will be no more than $900
  • Where: Toronto, Ontario Canada

Are we flying or driving?

  • We’ll be driving out to Toronto in minivans.  Google Maps says it should take 9:19 to drive there, so we’ll make it a roadtrip!  Driving will help keep the costs down, and even if we flew we’d still have to pay to rent vans to use as transportation.

I signed up for the Tijuana trip, do I need to sign up for this trip too?

  • I have reserved spaces for all 12 people who originally signed up for the Tijuana trip.  If you’re not interested in this trip to Toronto you need to let me know ASAP.

I didn’t sign up for the Tijuana trip… can I sign up to be on the Toronto Team?

  • Yes!  Absolutely!  However… right now there are only TWO openings.
  • CSM accepts teams in groups of 7-14 people or 20-28 people.  If we have between 15-19 people then we’ll be too big to serve in only one location, but too small to serve in two locations effectively.  By letting us bring an extra 1-5 people they would basically be refusing a team of 7-14 from coming.
  • The first two people who are not currently “on the team” who get a $50 deposit to P.Mike will be registered.
  • Please download the Toronto Mission Team Application & Release Forms and submit them to P.Mike completely filled out.

What if I register after the two open spaces are already filled?

  • You will be put on a wait-list until we either: a) we have enough people to bump our group size up to meet requirements for a medium group; or b) CSM’s availability is filled by other groups before we can meet those requirements and you won’t be able to participate in this trip.

Why Toronto, and what will we do there?

  • Did you know Toronto is the world’s most diverse city?  We’ll serve in various capacities throughout the week, likely even in different cultural contexts.  Each day we’ll eat a meal at a different ethnic restaurant to experience different aspects of the many cultures that co-exist within Toronto… but that will only be one small aspect of the cultural variety we’ll experience throughout our week.
  • Check out CSM’s page on Toronto to learn more .

When’s the deadline to sign up?

  • ASAP… really!  As you discuss this opportunity with your family, remember that only the first two students who register with P.Mike are guaranteed a spot on this team.  Hopefully we can get enough students to join the team so that all who want to participate can have that opportunity, but another team may swoop in and grab up those remaining few spots before we can fill them!
  • Make your decision quickly, but keep your word… if you sign up to participate please realize that you are making a commitment to this team (don’t sign up if you only “think you can come”).

Do I need a Passport?

  • YES YES YES.  If you don’t have one go here immediately and apply for your passport ASAP!
  • You can either apply for a Passport Book (the “full” passport) or the new Passport Card (which is license-sized and is good for Canada, Mexico, and the islands).  Learn more about the Passport Card vs. Passport Book here, and apply for the Passport Card online here.

UPDATE: As of 4:00pm, 4/29 – there is only one remaining guaranteed spot on the team.

UPDATE: As of 5/1 – all guaranteed spots on the team are filled.  We are now taking names to put on the “Wait-List.”  If we get six more people interested then we can try to get our team bumped up to the next group-size.  Let P.Mike know ASAP if you’re interested and can commit to this team if space opens up!

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