Mission Trip Mishaps

Many churches support full time foreign missionaries who are usually associated with other para-church organizations and/or denominational headquarters.  However, in the past decade, many churches have chosen to send out their own short and intermediate term mission teams.  These teams are being sent for various reasons.  Primarily to help the people in the foreign country accomplish a task or training that could not be done in country.  One important bi-product or result is that volunteers are growing up in their faith by participating.

Because missions have become such a strategic ministry, more and more churches are doing them.  However, for most churches, planning and training can be minimal.

Below is an entry for a claim report that came from a West Coast church on a short term mission trip to Japan in 2005.

A team in Japan was snowboarding on their free day, and a youth group member lost control of his snowboard, and ran over a Japanese girl, shattering her ankle.  She was rushed to the hospital in an ambulance and required surgery and one month of treatment, before she could return home.  The team member (and team) obviously felt horrible and apologized to the family and even took fruit and flowers to the hospital, which their host church advised them to do. The Japanese family appeared to accept their apology.

The team returned to the US, only to find out that the Japanese family filed an international lawsuit against the ministry – charging the Youth Pastor with negligence and suing for damages.

Fortunately for this church, not only did they train well, they purchased Brotherhood Mutual’s Passport To Ministry Option 1 and were covered for this claim.

If this was your church, would there be coverage?  Not from your current U.S. insurance policy. All liability ceases when you go outside the U.S. and her territories.  You must purchase Foreign Liability coverage.  For your next mission trip, consider Brotherhood’s Passport To Ministry.  Call us for a free quote.

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