missionary mental health

The Intermissionary Gathering - Part III. Love Dinner

At the Gathering, I didn’t need to facilitate any of the conversations at the table because we’d already spent two days together. There was so much laughing and easy sharing, I just sat and watched. I also spilled an entire solo cup of tea into an 11-year-old missionary kid’s plate. She just kept eating - no complaint. Of course.

Life’s like that sometimes and guess what? Nobody cares.

People are dying for community and a place to belong. So many of our chronic pain and mental health struggles would evaporate if we just had a place where we could go and be ourselves and be accepted, regularly. If you don’t have it. Create it.

Reentry Got You Blue?

Did you know that connection with other people is not just a preference, but a biological imperative for humans?

Have you been tricked by introvert-extravert theory, thinking you’re fine without meaningful human connection? Well, your nervous system disagrees.

Human beings evolved in tribes of 30-40 people and that wasn’t just occasional lunches or cubicle time, that was around fires, with kids and elders doing friendship, conflict, marriage … all of it.

Raise your hand if you learned, maybe for the first time, how good that feels during your work on the field. Are you home now and surprised by regular depression and anxiety?

Western culture is terrible at meaningful connection now.

And while human culture has evolved at Ferrari speed and behaves like those connections aren’t important anymore, your brain, which evolves at tricycle speed, ain’t buying it.

You’re not crazy - you need your people.


This is why we created The Gathering - a four-day, unplugged, under-the-stars camp out, in the Tennessee hills, for returned and returning missionaries and global servants.

Approximately 100% of our feedback, from three years of debrief and reentry retreats, includes at least one of the following phrases:

So nice to be with others who get it.

Loved being in community again.

This was so needed. The break. The people. The mountains. Thank you.

Of course The Gathering will deliver cutting-edge reentry training and the best practices of international member care, but first and foremost, we’re putting you all together for the weekend in a quiet Tennessee holler, with falling leaves and scanty cell phone service.

Tickets are on sale now here and the price goes up September 1st. So don’t wait. Also, kids under 16 come free!

If you want to stay looped with The Gathering and all the other interesting reentry stuff simmering on the Intermissionary stove, be sure to drop your email.