Explore these books and resources for nurses interested in God's global mission.

Healthcare Missions: a JCN Collection

Journal of Christian Nursing has a collection of articles related to missions.  All articles are free to NCF members.

Professional Preparation for Healthcare Missions

This PowerPoint by Connie Jarlsberg, RN, MSN, summarizes the areas of preparation needed for healthcare workers to be effective as missionaries in cross-cultural settings and points to next steps. It was presented at Urbana 12 by Connie Jarlsberg who was a missionary nurse in Uganda with WorldVenture and has served as a Missions Consultant with NCF.

Christian Journal for Global Health

This is an open-access online journal for persons interested or involved in healthcare missions.

Annotated Bibliography

Corbett, Steve, and Fikkert, Brian. When Helping Hurts: How to Alleviate Poverty Without Hurting the Poor...and Yourself. Chicago, IL: Moody Publishers. 2009. ISBN 978-0-8024-5705-9. -- The authors from the Chalmers Institute engage readers who desire to assist people who lack financial resources with stories of their own mistakes, case studies of people who were helped well, and situations when good programming went awry. They distinguish between situations which require relief, rehabilitation, and development and describe approaches that are appropriate to each of these situations.

Elmer, Duane. Cross Cultural Conflict: Building Relationships for Effective Ministry. Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press. 1993. ISBN 0-8308-1657-7. -- Ministering across cultures and languages often results in misunderstanding and conflict. Dr. Elmer explains in practical terms how to navigate these situations.

Elmer, Duane. Cross-Cultural Connections: Stepping out and Fitting In Around the World. Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press. 2002. ISBN 0-8308-2309-3. -- Years of experience preparing missionaries and business persons for ministry and work in and another culture have been compiled into this very readable book.

Elmer, Duane. Cross-Cultural Servanthood: Serving the World in Christlike Humility. Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press. 2006. ISBN-10: 0-8308-3378, ISBN-13: 978-0-8308-3378-8. -- Taking a humble learning posture when ministering across cultures is presented as the alternative to coming across as superior or paternalistic.

Engel, James F., and Dyrness, William A. Changing the Mind of Missions: Where Have We Gone Wrong? Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press. 2000. ISBN 0-8308-2239-9. -- An analysis of how missions has been conducted in the past with an eye to how missions should look in the future.

Fountain, Daniel E. Primary Diagnosis and Treatment.Oxford: The Macmillan Publishers LTD. 2008. ISBN 978-1-4050-8391-1. -- A manual to aid the personnel who man the clinics and rural health outposts in developing countries to diagnose and treat common illnesses. This is a helpful book for nurses functioning alone in a clinic setting.

Fountain, Daniel E.  Health, the Bible, and the Church. Wheaton, IL: Billy Graham Center Monograph, Wheaton College, 60187. 1989. -- Dan Fountain presents a theological look at medical missions and health from his many years of experience as a medical missionary.

Hiebert, Paul G.  Anthropological Insights for Missionaries.  Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books.  1985.  ISBN: 0-8010429-7. -- In order to communicate the gospel and provide quality healthcare we must understand the worldviews and cultural practices of the people we are serving. This book is a great introduction to anthropology for those interested in missions.

Lederleitner, Mary. Cross-cultural Partnerships.  Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press.  2010.  ISBN-10: 0-8308-3747-7-- “One of the biggest challenges in global mission work is money -- not merely the need for it, but working through cross-cultural differences surrounding how funds are used and accounted for. Cross-cultural missteps regarding financial issues can derail partnerships between supporting churches and agencies and national leaders on the ground.”  This is an excellent introduction to navigating the world of partnerships and financial issues in a cross-cultural context.

Leflers, Jeanne and Plotnick, Julia. Volunteering at Home and Abroad: The Essential Guide for Nurses. Indianapolis, IN.  Sigma Theta Tau.  2011 -- ISBN-10:1930538987.-- The authors have 40 years of collective experience in volunteer service in multiple countries. Julia Plotnick has served with the U.S. Public Health Service including positions as chief nurse and as assistant surgeon general.  This book is written specifically for nurses and provides a comprehensive guide on a variety of topics: choosing a project, planning travel to understanding ethical dilemmas abroad and integrating overseas experiences into practice at home.  

Lingenfelter, Sherwood G. and Mayers, Marvin K. Ministering Cross-Culturally: An Incarnational Model for Personal Relationships. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Book House. 1997. ISBN 0-8010-5632-2. -- This book explores the areas of tension that occur when moving to a culture different from one's culture of origin. The authors then examine the Biblical teaching on the subject.

Livermore, David A. Serving with Eyes Wide Open: Doing Short Term Missions. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books. 2006. ISBN 978-0-8010-6616-0. -- Short-term mission trips are a great way to impact the Kingdom. Yet they can lack effectiveness because of the mistakes or naivete on the part of participants. This book opens our eyes to global and cultural realities so we can become more effective cross-cultural ministers.

Myers, Bryant L. Walking with the Poor. Maryknoll, New York: Orbis. 1999. ISBN 0-57075-275-3. -- As the international program strategist for World Vision, Bryant Myers has written a text that presents a Christian approach to transformational development that is a great summary of the experience and thinking of leading Christian community developers.

Myers, Bryant, Dufault-Hunter, Erin, and Voss, Isaac. Health, Healing and Shalom. Pasadena, CA: William Carey Library. 2015. ISBN 978-0-87808-540-8. This book evolved out of presentations that took place at the West Coast Healthcare Missions conference held at Fuller Seminary. The focus is on a theology of healthcare missions using the Hebrew concept of shalom and how that concept impacts healthcare missions in a variety of settings, disciplines and practices.

Plueddemann, James E. Leading Across Cultures: Effective Ministry and Mission in the Global Church.  Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press. 2009.  ISBN 978-0-8308-2578-3. --  A real glimpse into how styles of leadership vary in cultures from a seasoned missionary, mission leader and missiologist. "The future of the global church depends on effective multicultural leaders."

Tazelaar, Grace J. Caring Across Cultures: Preparing for Effective Missionary Nursing. Madison, WI. NCF Press, P.O. Box 7895, Madison, WI 53707-7895. 2003. ISBN 0-9723123-6-6. -- The Missions Director for NCF prepares nurses spiritually, emotionally, professionally and physically in this practical book that also provides 5 contact hours of continuing nursing education. (Order online.)

Warner, David, and Bower, Bill. Helping Health Care Workers Learn. Palo Alto, CA: The Hesperian Foundation, P.O. Box 1692, Palo Alto, CA 94302. 1982. ISBN 0-942364-10-4 -- The classic text for teaching community health workers to promote health in their communities and to diagnose and treat common illnesses. Available is several languages with appropriate culturally sensitive illustrations.

Warner, David. Where There Is No Doctor. Palo Alto, CA: The Hesperian Foundation, P.O. Box 1692, Palo Alto, CA 94302. 1977. ISBN 0-942364-01-3 -- A classic text presents common illnesses in developing countries and their treatment using available remedies. Available in several languages with appropriate, culturally-sensitive illustrations.