Grace Dental and Medical Missions is grounded in a core philosophy whose primary objective is sending and supporting dental and medical missionaries to foreign countries to present the Gospel and assist in establishing local churches. Our desire is “…that we might be fellowhelpers to the truth.” (3 John 8) through dental and medical service to draw attention to the message of salvation through Jesus Christ.
Our philosophy of ministry has six aspects:
The Fundamentals of the Faith:
We work with local churches, missionaries, mission boards, and other Christian organizations that are in agreement with our doctrinal statement and Biblical faith and practice. Individuals on our staff and all who participate in our health care and evangelistic activities must agree in writing with our statement of faith. We do not partner with other Christian dental or medical organizations unless they too agree in faith and practice with our doctrinal statement. We do not seek or accept funding from governmental or private humanitarian organizations.
Evangelism First: Our philosophy is to focus our health care resources on evangelism and church planting. It would be easy to become consumed with dental and medical clinics to relieve human suffering or to meet individual health care needs. These needs alone can be overwhelming in their magnitude. However, we see our ministry of compassion aimed toward the souls of men, women, and children through our unique use of dental and medical resources.
Proven Partnership Strategies:
Over the years we developed a partnership strategy of working closely with foreign contacts and local churches. Our strategy is to develop contacts in a target country, break down bureaucratic and cultural barriers, plant evangelistic seeds, water them through persistent follow-up, and praise God for the harvest. We identify contacts in those countries where our dental and medical clinics can be most effective and work with them to send short-term or longer term teams. We work with like-minded local churches in the United States to educate, develop and support health care professionals to send out as dental and medical missionaries in obedience to the Great Commission. We are the mission board sought for training, development, leadership, sponsorship, and support of dental and medical missionaries.
Short-term Field Team Ministries:
We plan our short-term field team ministries around one or more dentists, doctors, or health care professionals augmented by other team members. Our field team trips are planned so each member of the team has a valued role and a set of tasks to support either health care activities or ministry, or evangelism with local pastors. We do not subscribe to a philosophy of “sacred tourism” and ensure that our short-term field team ministries are focused on daily objectives. Our team-oriented philosophy results in more invitations by missionaries to return again and referrals to other missionaries. Also, many individuals take repeated field team trips as valued members of our field teams and view their participation as an essential part of their personal Christian ministry.
Long Range Planning:
Our mission seeks to be an organization where like-minded Christian dental and medical professionals can serve the Lord in evangelism and church planting through a variety of ways that fit their abilities and professional circumstances. GDMM has a long range five-year plan wherein health care professionals have diverse opportunities to serve in evangelism and church planting ministries ranging from a short clinic trip within six hours of the United States to a much longer ministry in a missionary clinic in Africa or Asia. Our philosophy is that Christian dentists, doctors, and other health care professionals should be offered a variety of opportunities to serve through our mission.
We are committed to the highest standards of financial, doctrinal, and Christian conduct accountability to our supporting churches and individuals.
All our financial transactions are open and transparent. Our financial position is reviewed quarterly against an annual budget by our Board of Directors and annually by an auditor. We are committed to high standards of office administration and open communication with our supporters.
All our staff and missionaries must review our doctrinal statement annually and sign a statement of agreement with it. All participants in our short term field team trips must also indicate in writing their agreement with our doctrinal statement.
When we are in other countries we respect the cross-cultural sensitivities of churches in which we minister. We hold our field teams and staff to high standards of Christian conduct whether at home or in a cross-cultural environment.