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Update: How Covid-19 is Impacting Domestic and International Missions


As we move toward this upcoming summer, many have been hopeful that 2021 will allow more opportunities for mission trips, camps, and other outreach and discipleship opportunities. However, we understand that there are still many questions right now about international and domestic missions, and we wanted to highlight some of the key things to understand as you make plans for this summer.


First, as of today (February 10, 2021), the number of Covid cases in the U.S. has been decreasing sharply for the past four weeks. From early January to early February, we’ve seen about a 50% reduction in the number of domestic cases. Praise God that we are seeing things trend in the right direction! This is setting us up for a great summer of domestic ministry. The same trend is true of worldwide cases during the past month as well (about 40% decrease).

Daily New Cases in the U.S., courtesy of worldometers.info

Furthermore, as the vaccine continues to be administered, we hope that the number of cases will continue to dwindle even further. As of early February, the number of people vaccinated has surpassed the number of people who have been infected with the virus, which marks a great moment in the turning of the tide. Each day, as more and more are being vaccinated, we hope to see continued improvements in this area.


As far as international travel goes right now, there are some reasons to be optimistic, but also some reasons to be cautious. We have had teams serving in places like Mexico and Haiti during the last few months, and they have had great, fruitful trips. Many other churches are planning international trips as well. The biggest hurdle right now is that the U.S. is requiring a negative Covid test in order for groups to be allowed to re-enter the country after being in an international context. We don’t know how long this might be in place. However, it is a good sign that the number of domestic Covid-19 cases is rapidly decreasing—that is certainly a helpful factor. We also know the major U.S. airlines are currently lobbying against this new restriction, so it’s possible that this policy will be removed soon.


For those considering international trips right now, we are encouraging groups to hold tight for a few more weeks to see how things develop. We are doing what we can to help groups delay financial payments, and we even have an arrangement with our travel agent that allows us to hold airfare with a deposit that will be fully refundable as long as we cancel at least 60 days prior to the trip. This is allowing some groups to lock in airfare rates at good prices, but also being able to cancel in the coming weeks (if necessary) without losing money.


At the same time, we also have many other groups who are looking into domestic mission trip options. If you’re interested in a domestic trip this summer, we have a handful of locations that still have availability this summer, such as Memphis, New York City, Orlando, St. Louis, and Puerto Rico (yes, it’s a U.S. territory!). If we can get you more information about any of these trips, please contact us at info@servantlife.com or check out www.servantlife.com/trips.


We will continue to share helpful updates about how the missions landscape is evolving and changing as we continue to move one day closer toward the end of the pandemic.



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