4 Ways You Can Serve: A Visit From SAMS Missionary Cathy Donahoe

4 Ways You Can Serve: A Visit From SAMS Missionary Cathy Donahoe

SAMS’ long-term missionaries will go on Home Ministry Assignments (HMA) every few years to reconnect and visit with family, their home church, and Senders. SAMS Missionaries also stop into the SAMS Home Office to share their ministry happenings and to debrief their time in the field.

Cathy (right) visits the SAMS Office and gifts Associate Director with a collage of ministry photos from the Dominican Republic.

Recently, Cathy Donahoe, who serves in the Dominican Republic, made her journey back to the States to spend time with her Senders and the churches that are involved in her ministry.  Cathy serves in several ministries in the Dominican Republic. She is a physical therapist, teaching classes at the university in the capital city. She also has a consolation ministry in her neighborhood, which involves members of her church bringing words of comfort and scripture to those in the community. In the recent years, Cathy took on a construction ministry, helping restores homes in the community that were affected by last year’s hurricane.

She has a full schedule in the Dominican Republic, making Home Ministry Assignment an important time of rest and renewal, and while the HMA calendar can fill up fast, there are ways to help your missionary during this transitional time. Here are four ways you can serve them:

  1. Set up a time to Share: As a church, give your missionary a designated time during the service to share how the Lord is working through their ministry. It allows those who support them to hear about how their prayers and giving have contributed. It also may inspire new people to get involved.
  2. Invite Missionaries to join your Bible study: This is a time of refreshment in the Lord for missionaries, but they may have been away for a long period of time, making it difficult to get connected with a community. Reach out and invite them to take part in your prayer or Bible Study group.
  3. Ask Intentional Questions: Let your missionary know that you want to hear about their ministry.  By showing an interest in the details of their ministry, you are letting missionaries know you care about their life and work. Some examples are:
    • What is your typical day like for you?
    • How have you seen God work in a person’s life while on the field?
    • How can I be praying for you?
  4. Be an active Listener: Sometimes just sitting and listening to someone is all the help they need. According to Serving as Senders by Neal Pirolo active listening says, “I am with you. I will take the time. I will put energy into really hearing you, not just what your surface words are saying.”

What are some ways you have served missionaries on home assignment? Missionaries, what’s a way someone has really blessed you during this time? Leave a comment!

Q&A: Serving Long-term with SAMS

Q&A: Serving Long-term with SAMS

Has the Lord given you a heart to serve Him through cross-cultural ministry? Serving with SAMS could be God’s answer to that prayer. Do you have questions about becoming a long-term missionary? Here are some answers:

Q: How long can I serve?

A: SAMS missionaries can serve anywhere from 1 year to career.

Q: Are there age limitations?

A: As long as health permits SAMS missionaries can be from 19 to 100 years old.

Q: How do I know when I am called?

A: SAMS is here to help you with that very important question. We will provide you with resources, an inquirers conference, and suggestions for your home church, all to help you know how God is leading.

Q: How long does it take to become a missionary?

A: Usually, it takes about 18 months from the time you enquire until you begin language school.

Q: Are SAMS missionaries employed by SAMS?

A: Yes, but all our SAMS missionaries must raise their own support. SAMS provides a budget and, of course, lots of training and support in finding prayer and financial partners.

Q: Who does SAMS send?

SAMS sends those of the Anglican Tradition who are willing to work under the authority of Anglican Bishops around the world.

Q: Does SAMS provide benefits?

A: Yes, benefits such as life insurance, health insurance, children’s educational benefits, and retirement funds are all a part of a SAMS missionary budget.

Q: What part does my church play in this?

A: SAMS exists to help local congregations send missionaries. Your local church will help you discern how God is leading. SAMS requires the participation of the local church in each missionary’s application and sending.

Q: How do I become a missionary?

Most start by phoning or emailing SAMS and then filling out a lengthy application. From there SAMS may invite you to a discernment conference. All SAMS missionaries must undergo several interviews including a psychological evaluation and theological evaluation. After approval of your application, you become a SAMS candidate. Candidates are in the process of raising support and receiving individualized training. After support is raised a candidate becomes a missionary and language and cultural training begins. Language training can take up to a year and then a missionary begins ministry.

Q: What if I am not sure that God is calling me?

Pray! SAMS is here to help you discern, but prayer is the key! Learn more about SAMS short-term opportunities.

For more information about long-term missionary service contact Associate Director.

Back to School! SAMS’ Calling in Educational Ministry

Back to School! SAMS’ Calling in Educational Ministry

In building the Body of Christ, Christians have historically established institutions of higher learning, which have had a great impact on the course of civilization. With Western educational institutions moving away from their Christian foundations, and other schools with no historic ties to Christianity coming to prominence, the opportunities for the gospel to impact governments and cultures are greatly diminished. As you send your children back to school in the upcoming weeks or perhaps start school yourself, are you thinking about the great need for Christian education to help shape the minds and hearts of tomorrow’s global leaders? Many SAMS Missionaries are rising to the challenge to bring others to Christ through educational ministry, and you can help, too.

The Society’s commitment to education is unwavering. God is at work through our missionaries to build the body of Christ through education. This comes in many forms, ranging from teaching in a children’s Christian school in Chile to training community health promoters in the Dominican Republic. We encourage you to visit to get acquainted with all of our missionaries and discover the ways they are involved with education.

Since the early days of the church, the Body of Christ has reached out to children and youth without families, taking on the responsibility of raising them and providing for their education. Christian missionaries continued that tradition by establishing orphanages and children’s homes throughout the world, and the need to care for children without families—or with families who cannot afford to support them—is larger than ever. Teaching young children has always been part of the Church’s mission. Providing a solid education grounded in the Gospel gives many young disciples a solid start.

As a missionary society, SAMS is interested in building up the whole Body of Christ. But as an Anglican missionary society, SAMS is committed to the building and strengthening of Anglican churches and dioceses around the globe. With the increasing importance of the Global South in Christianity in general and Anglicanism in particular, SAMS wants to help Anglican leaders throughout the world have the educational tools they need for effective ministry. While social outreach never replaces the proclamation of the Gospel in building up the Body of Christ, the two go hand in hand. James 2:14-17 speaks of the “works” needed to put “faith,” into action, including giving “things needed for the body.” Addressing social needs is a part of the Gospel that SAMS does not forget. Equipping local people to reach out to others in difficult or even horrific circumstances is considered a high calling by SAMS.

How can you help?

The first thing you can do is PRAY, especially for SAMS missionaries who helping to form the Godly character of young people through the education of the whole person. People who have been called to educate young people in the ways of the Lord certainly need prayer and other support, too. SAMS will help you connect to a missionary who is involved in educating young people.

Your praying, giving, and practical support will help those who are already ministering or it will help raise up new SAMS missionaries enabling the church to SEND many more laborers for the ripe harvest.

GIVE financially to help missionary teachers and their schools.

GO! There are many opportunities to teach young people and to use Teaching English as a Second Language in reaching people for Christ. If the Lord is calling you to missionary service, we have a place for you. Consider serving as a career missionary or as a Bridger from a month up to one year. If you are interested in putting together a short-term mission team [create a hyperlink] to come alongside missionaries who are teaching, SAMS can connect you in a variety of ways to fulfill God’s calling of you and your church.

A Change of Events

A Change of Events

by Gus Calvo, SAMS Short-term team leader to Chile

“Just as you cannot understand the path of the wind or the mystery of a tiny baby growing in its mother’s womb, so you cannot understand the activity of God, who does all things.  Plant your seed in the morning and keep busy all afternoon, for you don’t know if profit will come from one activity or another – maybe both.”  Ecclesiastes 11:5-6

Last September a team of 10, including myself, began the process of preparing to go on mission to Nicaragua. Several of us had been there before and discerned that God was calling us back. As we prepared, we felt the hand of God upon us, revealing one confirmation after another. Even fundraising exceeded our expectations.

Then I received a phone call that civil unrest had broken out in Nicaragua and situations of hostility had become more prevalent.  It seemed that we weren’t going to Nicaragua after all, and we had to regroup fast.  The Lord brought us all together for a season of ministry, rather than trying to understand the “whys,” we decided to trust first and understand later.

We turned to SAMS to explore the possibility of mission elsewhere.  Having kept busy throughout the formation process left us hungering to serve in whatever way the Lord revealed. A door swung wide open to connect with Heidi and Russ Smith, SAMS Missionaries in Chile. It only took two days for the group to get turned around!

We connected with our donors and they were supportive of the decision for us to go to Chile. The people in Nicaragua were equally understanding. I began to look at airfare to Chile and was taken aback by the prices to get us there.  Honestly, it was overwhelming.  After hearing the costs, the team felt as if a mission service was not going to happen.  I contacted SAMS, Heidi, and Russ to let them know that this expense would leave little in our budget. Then, my heart began to feel heavy as I heard the Lord saying, “Gus, what happened to trust first and understand later?”

Heidi encouraged me that the Lord would provide. He had taken us this far, and wouldn’t leave us now. Shortly after our talk, I made a second call to the travel agency, only to discover the prices for the airfare had dropped, enabling us to go to Chile after all. This journey has taught our team to trust in the Lord for everything, even if we feel doubt or disbelief. We cannot always understand the activity of God, but if we are certain in the Lord, he will lead us to where we are meant to serve.


Apply for the Agape Year Apprenticeship

Apply for the Agape Year Apprenticeship

Agape Year seeks a missional minded, Gospel-centric individual to serve the future church by sharing life, ministry and gifts with gap year fellows (18-20 year old) for a 5 month* (January-May 2019*) apprenticeship.

This apprenticeship will encourage the growth of spiritual gifts, engage in deep relational ministry, and have opportunities to see the wealth of imagination in God’s kingdom. From serving with the Church overseas (In 2018-2019, we will be serving with the Diocese of Singapore in Chiang Mai, Thailand) to engaging in parishes’ calls throughout the country, the apprentice will grow their own personal network and understanding of call.  This apprenticeship is ideal for an individual who holds the global church and mission in high regard, adheres to and desires to practice spiritual disciplines in the context of community, and has affection for young adults in transition.

In the future, Agape Year hopes that an apprentice will be called to plant a second Agape Year in another hub of Anglicanism in the United States.

An apprentice will:

  • provide residential supervision and hold fellows accountable to community standards
  • share in meals and study portions with fellows
  • travel with fellows overseas and throughout the country.
  • Help transport fellows to ministry sites and commitments.
  • Support and lead spiritual formation throughout the program through daily offices, Scripture studies, and spiritual direction.
  • Assist as needed with the administrative and logistic elements of the program (planning travel, booking churches, newsletters, blog updates, etc.)


  • 22 years of age or older
  • Robust faith and trust in Jesus Christ and commitment to a local church
  • Cross cultural and youth ministry experience
  • Strong interpersonal skills and problem solving initiative.
  • College degree or seminary study in related field preferred.
  • Appreciation for the Anglican tradition and communion.


  • Room and board provided for the 5 months (with a host family on the Northside of Pittsburgh)
  • Travel expenses covered to overseas portion and Sojourn (visiting parishes in the U.S.).
  • $2000 stipend, with the option of raising additional funds for personal support as well as partner development training. There may be an option to become a SAMS bridger providing more resources.

*There is an option of extending this internship to September-May.