Expectations & Rules

The leadership of Bethany Teams has adopted this list of expectations and rules.

In order to participate in a Bethany Teams mission trip experience, each trip participant must commit to follow these expectations and rules for the entire duration of their mission trip. If any trip member refuses to comply with these rules while in-country, he/she may be subject to being dismissed from the mission trip.

These expectations and rules are not designed to be legalistic or burdensome, but crafted with specific objectives in mind. Our six core objectives:

  1. Represent Christ and the Gospel well
  2. Ensure the safety and health of the trip participants
  3. Ensure the security of our global partners and interpreters
  4. Effectively engage in Christ-honoring ministry
  5. Be sensitive to the culture we are visiting
  6. Grow in our personal faith and maturity

Understanding the Role of the Team Leader

Each mission trip team will have a Team Leader. The role of the Team Leader is to facilitate the mission trip experience with our six core objectives in mind. Our Team Leaders are individuals that have demonstrated quality Christian character and they are well-trained to lead mission trips. For your safety and for the quality of your mission trip experience, we ask that every trip participant:

  • Make sure your Team Leader knows where you are at all times
  • Inform your Team Leader of any safety or health concerns
  • Honor and obey all directives given by your Team Leader

Expectations About Lifestyle and Attitude

  • Seek to honor Christ with your words, actions, and speech
  • Keep a positive attitude, regardless of circumstances
  • Participate in all team meetings and activities

Group and Safety Guidelines

  • Never be outside your housing or lodging complex alone
  • Shoes should be worn at all times
  • Do not ever give the address of your housing or lodging to any persons you meet
  • Always be in an “Approved Group” (Your Team Leader will define an “Approved Group”)

Expectations About Behavior and Conduct

  • No illegal/illicit drugs
  • No tobacco/hookah products
  • No E-Cigarettes
  • No alcohol (includes virgin drinks)
  • No pornography
  • No theft or “long-term borrowing”
  • No bizarre head-shaving or hair-dying during the mission trip experience
  • No clothing that advertises alcohol, politics, tobacco products, or secular music bands
  • No new body piercing during the mission trip experience

Expectations About Speech

  • No crude or obscene language
  • No dark humor
  • Limit sarcasm

Expectations About Media and Cameras

  • Follow Team Leader guidelines before posting anything on social media
  • Follow Team Leader guidelines concerning media consumption
  • Follow Team Leader guidelines as to when taking pictures is okay

Dress Code

Our dress codes vary depending on what country/destination you are traveling to. Overall, we ask for mission trip participants to seek to be modest and culturally sensitive. Your Team Leader will send you a detailed dress code for your country/destination before your trip.

Expectations About Phone Calls and Cell Phones

  • During ministry activities, cell phones ought to be kept out-of-sight
  • Personal cell phones can only be used during designated times
  • Refrain from excessive or unnecessary use of personal phones during your trip

Room Manners

  • No guys in any girls’ rooms; No girls in any guys’ rooms
  • Rooms must be kept clean and orderly at all times
  • Keep all doors locked for safety

Relationship Guidelines for Married People

  • Behave in a manner that honors your spouse
  • Be cautious and culturally sensitive with PDA

Relationship Guidelines for Non-Married People

  • No romantic dating relationships or pairing off at any time
  • No holding hands or extended hugs
  • No communicating any intent for a romantic relationship
  • No lap sitting
  • No back rubs
  • These apply to relationships with other team members and nationals

Health and Diet Expectations

  • Only consume foods endorsed by Team Leader
  • Inform Team Leader of any prescription/OTC meds you’re taking
  • Drink lots and lots of water
  • Limit soda and drinks with high sugar content
  • Immediately report any illnesses to your Team Leader
  • Wash your hands thoroughly before eating
  • Eat all food provided (speak with your Team Leader about health exceptions)
  • Food allergies must be communicated prior to trip departure
  • Wear shower shoes or flip-flops in shower

Ministry Guidelines

  • Avoid or limit jewelry during ministry activities
  • Most effective ministry is guys ministering to guys and girls ministering to girls
  • All team members must remain with the group at all times
  • We encourage passionate prayer, but avoid prayer that is excessively demonstrative or disorderly

Guidelines Regarding Theological Differences 

We work with Christian churches from many different denominations and theological persuasions. We seek to be ecumenical and inter-denominational in our approach to ministry and relationships. There will be a diversity of theological distinctives that may be represented amongst the team members of any given mission trip team. With this in mind, we expect all mission trip participants to:

  • Always be kind, gracious, and diplomatic with one another when discussing doctrinal differences
  • Avoid seeking to “convert” other believers to any particular theological conviction or doctrine