Sustainable Development defined: Developing countries are often on the receiving end of ideas and technology that simply cannot be sustained by those in need—and are inappropriate in many instances. Relief is often imposed on communities in greater need of development. When not harnessed correctly, this form of assistance inevitably becomes more harmful than helpful. Sustainable development (introduced by outside catalysts) is the liberating change in ethos and upgrade in technology embraced and advanced by the community. This is accomplished when innovative concepts and resources are properly introduced and integrated, building upon the factors that already contribute positively to the community.
Discipleship defined: We believe discipleship is the foundation for transformation. For development to be healthy and just, a Christ-centered worldview must be modeled and taught. Without discipleship, our greatest attempts at remedying the effects of poverty are futile at best.
“Not really a missionary kid but more like a kid missionary”, Matt sensed God’s leading into overseas ministry as a result of a mission trip fifteen years ago. Uncertain of how to get more involved, he lived with missionary friends in Costa Rica the following year. God’s direction became unmistakably clear, and upon finishing high school in Michigan he enrolled at the Moody Bible Institute in Chicago. During this season of life he became passionate about the impact of the church in the community—particularly in cities and among the poor. Desiring to be further equipped for wherever God would take him, Matt studied intercultural leadership and community development at Wheaton College.
After hearing a family friend speak about a medical mission trip to Romania, Pam had a burden for serving Christ at a young age. While attending a Christian high school in California—teachers, chapel speakers and camp speakers planted seeds that deepened Pam’s desire for world missions. A cousin suggested that if she wanted to be a missionary, she needed to attend the Moody Bible Institute. She moved to Chicago with no reason to go elsewhere. Apart from her academic growth, God used Moody to shape Pam through her friends and experiences, professors and classes. Through firsthand involvement in ministries to prisoners, prostitutes and orphans, her passions were confirmed—caring for people who have suffered much.
Matt and Pam met at Moody and married in 2003. They lived in Chicago, and are part of the overseas ministry of South Loop Community Church. In 2004, after accepting an invitation to work and minister in Haiti, they joined Fellowship International Mission. During their preparation, they lived in Miami to study Haitian Creole and learn from the Haitian community in Florida. The McCormicks have lived in Haiti since February of 2007.