Obviously, missionals serve neighbors and the missional community, but they also have a duty to self-care as well as a commitment to support our sponsoring organization—MLF. We support MLF and their leadership publicly and more importantly, we are united in our support for the cause. This starts with alignment of values.
MLF is a nonprofit, faith-based organization whose ideals and philosophy come directly from the Gospel of Jesus Christ. MLF bylaws govern the affairs of the organization and form the backbone of our Missional Discernment Process. At the core of MLF are beliefs and guiding principles. These are living values that have stood the test of time, but as a discipline, are systematically revisited for possible amendments and fine tuning. More than just marketing mantras, these become rules for decision-making and action, even when no one is looking. The bedrock of these beliefs are the Vision, Mission, Values and Goals.
Vision: We empower communities into a lifestyle of service with the homeless.
Mission: We provide food and clothing, cultivate community, and promote dignity to our homeless brothers and sisters in need.
- Homelessness is the result of a profound, catastrophic loss of family.
- God, infinitely perfect and blessed in Himself, in a plan of sheer goodness, freely created man to make him share in His own blessed life.
- By virtue of being created by God in His image, we are all called to live in community and relationship with Him through each other.
- The family is the original cell of social life.
- You shall love your neighbor as yourself.
- All members of the human family are equal in dignity.
- The Lord God took the man and settled him in the Garden of Eden to cultivate and care for it. – Genesis 2:15
Discerning missionals show a willingness to learn and are open to growth. A discerning missional is honest and willing to engage fully and humbly in the Missional Discernment Process.
Discerning Missionals understand our tongue-in-cheek slogan: Semper Gumby (Always Flexible) and are prepared to exhibit flexibility and a spirit of cooperation in their attitudes, beliefs, behaviors and practices. Ultimately, a discerning missional is willing to become the kind of person who can embody and live out MLF’s vision, mission, values and goals. Missional living is an authentic expression of these attributes. It is confirmed by a sense of energy and purpose that result in charitable actions such as the Corporal and Spiritual Works of Mercy.
Corporal Works of Mercy
- To feed the hungry
- To give water to the thirsty
- To clothe the naked
- To shelter the homeless
- To visit the sick
- To visit the imprisoned or ransom the captive
- To bury the dead
Spiritual Works of Mercy
- To instruct the ignorant
- To counsel the doubtful
- To admonish sinners
- To bear wrongs patiently
- To forgive offenses willingly
- To comfort the afflicted
- To pray for the living and the dead
To what end? What are we hoping to achieve when we serve as missionals?
Our goals are tied to our individual gifts and aligned with the goals of MLF.
MLF (Evergreen) Goals
- Transform the way people view the stereotype of those who find themselves homeless.
- Reconnect the homeless to self, family and community.
- Help the chronically homeless rediscover and utilize their God-given talents to do purposeful work.
- Connect human-to-human, heart-to-heart, through fellowship, food, and hospitality.
- Inspire people into a lifestyle of abundance by giving their best first.