Serve with Mexican Christians as they
reach their city.
Serve in Mexico City with Avance for a week, summer or a whole year. Immerse yourself through language and culture while living with a host family, taking Spanish classes, serving under national leadership and participating in a local church. Help Mexican Christians reach out with compassion and love in one of the largest cities of the world, and grow and learn about God’s will for your life at the same time.
“I always knew that God is bigger than I could ever understand or imagine. Living in Mexico City, God gifted me with the opportunity to see a glimpse of Him and to understand Him more deeply in the context of a different culture. I left my YearOut experience craving to know God even better still and am blessed to have seen Him move in Mexico.”
–Kaylie Weathers ’14-15
Avance YearOut Participant
The Avance Experience
Every year, since 1971, young people — just like you maybe — have come to Mexico City through Avance. Not for vacation. Not to pad their resumes. Not to earn a salary. They come because Jesus Christ has called them to serve.
Over 20 million people in Mexico City have no personal relationship with Jesus Christ. The needs and brokenness of the poor and those suffering injustice are seen everywhere. Jesus took on flesh and dwelt among us in our broken world, becoming a servant. As you take classes to understand the language and culture, participate in a local body of believers, and serve in ministry under Mexican leadership, you will learn how to eat, speak, and live like Mexican people do in order to reach them for Christ.
So go ahead. Mop off your face after playing basketball with some gang members. Split a bean taco with a ragged street urchin. Swallow your fear as you knock door-to-door, sharing your faith. Lead worship in Spanish. Take a bucket bath. Climb ancient pyramids. Try grilled cactus and chicken feet. Make friends that will last a lifetime.
You get the idea. Welcome to Avance!
Opportunities with Avance
Ignite! – Come for one week
Summer! — Explore Mexico for a whole summer
- Dates: June 7, 2017 – August 4, 2017
- Cost: $2150 + airfare
YearOut – Serve for a whole year
- Dates: September 19, 2017 – August 8, 2018
- Cost: $1200/month + airfare
Earn College Credit/ a Masters Degree
Language Training and Cross-Cultural Studies are key elements of the Avance program.
Many colleges and universities offer academic credit to participants of the Avance Summer and YearOut programs. It is also possible to arrange an internship through Avance or for it to count as a study abroad experience.
The requirements vary by institution. To find out if your Avance experience is eligible for academic credit, you can contact the Foreign Language Department, Academic Advisory, or other appropriate parties at your school.
Avance is in the process of finalizing an agreement with Greenville College in Greenville, IL (www.greenville.edu) to offer academic credit for the Spanish courses offered during our summer program. More information on this option can be obtained by contacting the Avance director.
Summer Spanish Course Syllabi
YearOut Certificate in Cross-Cultural Leadership
- Cross-Cultural Studies
- Intensive Spanish Language Training
- Spiritual Character Formation
- Ministry Internship
- Cross-Cultural Leadership Studies
- Leadership Practicum
2 Years or More – Earn a Masters Degree
- Experiential field-based learning alongside mentors and facilitators
- Studies integrated with Avance ministry placement
- New model of theological education for global and urban mission
- Masters degree from South African Theological Seminary (SATS)
- Click here for more info on SATS accreditation and standards
Meet the Director
How God Called Me to Missions
by: Paul Johnson
A number of years ago, God placed a spark in my heart to check out missions. At first it was just that, a spark. I hadn’t seriously considered anything beyond going to college, beginning a career and someday getting married, until a friend of mine came back from a two-month cross-cultural mission experience. He spoke with such enthusiasm about his experience and what God had done in and through him that little by little I began to pay attention to God’s global call in the Scriptures.
I read verses like “go into all the world and preach the Gospel…”and I began to think that God might actually be calling me to go. The thought scared me, but the spark in my heart was beginning to “ignite”. Over the next few years, the spark that had been planted via my friend, God’s Word, and several short-term missions trips, was beginning to kindle. In December of 1987 I attended Urbana 87 (InterVarsity’s Student Mission Conference), and I felt God calling me to take a real step out of my comfort zone.
Up to this point, I had participated in trips where I stayed with a group of Americans, ate peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, went out to “minister”, and then returned to the safe confines of a mission complex, but never had the opportunity to establish relationships with the people I was “ministering” to. I had no chance to follow-up on those who had responded to the Gospel, and I learned relatively little about the people and their culture.
What would it mean for me to step out of my comfort zone? A year before Urbana a friend had told me about a program called Avance. He told me that his mission experience with Avance had changed his life. He told me how he had lived with a Mexican family, worked in a Mexican church, and served under national leadership. He had studied Spanish with Mexican teachers, visited important historic and cultural sites in Mexico City, and learned to love Mexican food (real Mexican food, not the Taco Bell variety). Most importantly, he had seen individuals come to Christ and had personally followed up with them. He had established lasting friendships with Mexican Christians and non-Christians. At Urbana, God confirmed to me that He was calling me to serve with Avance.
The following summer I headed to Mexico City. The experience I had with Avance was much more challenging than my earlier experiences. Adjusting to a completely new diet, learning how to get around on public transportation and sharing my faith in Spanish involved more effort than when I worked with translators and was escorted from place to place. Yet, the benefits were much greater and outweighed the challenges. The joy of seeing people respond to the Gospel and personally following up with them, establishing lasting relationships with my Mexican family and church and learning something of what it means to follow Christ in one of the largest cities of the world, proved to be life transforming experiences.
God used Avance in my life to ignite in me a passion for missions and God’s call to the world. Avance has a unique role among short-term mission programs. Many missionaries have come out of the Avance program to serve the Lord long-term throughout the world, not only in Latin America. We have seen missionaries birthed through Avance who are more in touch with the culture, less paternalistic and more cooperative with the national Church than others who have not had the privilege of experiencing a program like Avance.
Avance gives young adults a realistic view of missionary service, working with the local church, but also in other forms of ministry: micro-enterprise development, social outreach – orphanages, Christian clinics, children’s ministry, educational programs and more. Avance offers an opportunity to be immersed in Latin culture, living with local families, studying the language and culture with native teachers, working with national leadership and sharing the love of Jesus at the same time. Throughout, Avance provides an opportunity to “ignite” your passion for missions and to consider your role in His global mission.
Interested in Avance?
Please follow the link and fill out the form below, indicating your interest in Avance!