Serve Asia: Short-term mission - International
Serve Asia is OMF’s short-term missions programme for those who want to serve East Asia’s peoples for up to 12 months.
With a focus on mission discipleship, it is designed to equip and encourage you, and your sending community, to find your place in all that God is doing in East Asia and beyond.
Over the past decade, we have seen more than 5000 people sent out from 25 different countries to participate in Serve Asia, serving in many different roles across 17 East Asian countries.
More information on the different short-term mission opportunities available through Serve Asia can be found below. Click on any of the categories to view opportunities in your chosen ministry area. Alternatively, you can browse all the short-term mission opportunities available through Serve Asia by visiting the OMF Opportunities website.
To mobilise, disciple, and equip Serve Asia workers and their communities for sharing the good news to East Asia’s peoples.
We will see purposeful involvement in the lives of Serve Asia participants contributing to the global Kingdom of God.
How can I be serving in missions?
You can do a wide range of things, from student outreach and prayer journeys to medical work and English teaching. We work in diverse locations across East Asia, from huge cities like Tokyo to the villages of Thailand. Each placement contributes to our long-term work to share the good news of Jesus. If you’re looking for a team experience, we regularly partner with churches, Bible colleges, seminaries and schools to send short-term teams.Where can I go?
Serve Asia placements are available in 17 different East Asian countries where OMF has long-term workers. You can browse current Serve Asia opportunities by location on the OMF Opportunities website.
When can I go and for how long?
The Serve Asia programme runs all year around. You can serve for anything from one week to 12 months alongside OMF’s long-term workers in East Asia. Some of the Serve Asia opportunities listed online have set dates, while others are more flexible and can be arranged to suit both you and the host country.
One or two week mission trips are popular with those who are already in close proximity to the ministry location. Although only in the field for a short time, Serve Asia workers can be involved in many ways that work towards growing God’s church in Asia.
For those looking to go on a more long-term mission trip we have lots of opportunities available. We will do our best to find a place where you can serve in a ministry using your specific skills and gifts to meet a need in the field. By going for 6 weeks to 12 months it gives you an opportunity to be immersed in, and learn about, culture and language. You will also receive spiritual and personal support and mentoring from an OMF missionary.
Which trip is right for me? How do I choose?
If you are unsure which placement is right for you the Serve Asia Coordinator in your home country can help you to prayerfully consider how your gifts and skills could be used on the mission field and help to match this to current short-term mission opportunities in East Asia.
You can get in touch with your nearest OMF centre using the contact form.
Does Serve Asia offer group mission trips?
Serve Asia regularly partners with churches, bible colleges, seminaries and schools to send teams to East Asia. We want to support and serve churches and other sending communities as they find ways to be more strategically involved in reaching East Asia’s peoples, and as they spur their members into deeper areas of discipleship.
What will it cost?
The cost of a Serve Asia trip will vary depending on your home country and host country. Most trips will cost (USD) between $1000-3000 per month not including airfare and other one-time departure expenses (insurance, vaccinations, etc). However more detailed costs will be provided by the Serve Asia Coordinator in your home country when enquiring about a specific mission trip.
Find out more about raising support, including fundraising for mission trips.
How does the application process work?
If you are interested in applying for one of the Serve Asia mission trips listed online, please register with the OMF Opportunities website. Answering these few quick questions helps us to connect you with your local OMF team. Once you have created an account it enables you to submit an inquiry about the opportunity which interests you.
After you submit an inquiry the Serve Asia Coordinator in your home country will contact you and ask you to complete a set of application forms. Once these have been reviewed you will meet a local OMF representative for an interview. After the interview your coordinator will let you know whether you have been accepted into the Serve Asia programme.
In some cases, people may not be able to participate in an on-the-ground Serve Asia placement because of medical or personal issues. The wellbeing of both the applicant and the long-term ministry are paramount to us as we thoroughly screen each application.
Once your application has been accepted you will be invited to attend a training day or weekend in your home country to help you to prepare for your mission trip.
To help you prepare spiritually and practically for your Serve Asia trip we recommend the Prepare Your Heart devotional found here.
Will I be supported on this mission trip?
You’ll benefit from our help and support in learning the language and culture, pastoral care and medical care.
What happens when I return home?
Our support doesn’t stop when your placement ends. We hope your time with Serve Asia will be part of your life-long growth as a disciple of Jesus playing a part in his global plan. We provide mentoring, ways to stay involved in God’s work in the world and advice to help you and your church make the most of your experience with us.
The term discipleship doesn’t appear in the bible. What do we mean by it?
By mission discipleship we mean that we hope to walk alongside each Serve Asia worker as they try to discern where and how they fit into God’s mission.
Before the great commission (Matthew 8:28), Jesus simply asked his disciples to “Follow me.” For three years the disciples walked, talked, ate, slept, witnessed miracles, cast out demons, and more as they followed Jesus. Through their following they learned. Through their following they were equipped. Through their following their commitment grew – so much so that when Jesus gave the great commission, their hearts were fully engaged, and their lives shaped for the long-term journey.
Serve Asia is not just about the “doing”.
In Serve Asia we don’t just focus on going to the mission field and “doing” something. It’s all about learning and finding out more about what is at the centre of God’s heart. It’s about learning more about what it means to follow God, even if this is to hard places. Serve Asia is not just about the short-term, it’s about gaining long-term vision and commitment.
Upon returning home, we help each Serve Asia worker to integrate and process their experiences. We walk with them as God leads, exploring further involvement in mission through praying, going, sending, learning, mobilising, or welcoming East Asians.