Joining WEC – What is CO?
Candidate Orientation (CO) is a 12 week relational experience in which we seek God’s confirmation of your call to WEC and, through a variety of learning opportunities, help you find your fit within WEC. CO is not primarily about information, input and training:
- It is about knowing and belonging. Do I fit into WEC? How do I fit?
- It is about prayer and character. Can I believe God? Who am I in Him?
- It is about thinking through issues related to reaching people and planting churches; and about practical, hands-on exposure. How can I make a difference? What is the good news?
CO is a time of bonding with WEC, becoming a part of the WEC family. During this time the Candidates learn the WEC ethos of living by faith, prayer, holiness, willingness to sacrifice, simple living and maintaining fellowship in a communal setting.
“It was really helpful to be part of a multi-cultural group with time to reflect on anticipated challenges, cultural adaptation and potential crises. We gained realistic insights into working overseas. It was particularly helpful for us, as Helen had some overseas experience whereas I had not. CO brought us to a place of equal preparedness and understanding. It helped establish good relationships with the sending branch, giving us the confidence of future care and support. We thoroughly recommend it to all, however short their anticipated service.”
Charles and Helen
Before coming to CO most candidates have spent some time at a Bible College. WEC encourages lifelong learning and things covered in CO are practical, ‘just in time’ learning for the next step of moving overseas.
Orientation is a full-time commitment, which is why we require candidates to live on site. You will be expected to give yourself full-time to CO. There is structured ‘class room’ time together between the hours of 9am and 3pm. There is some evening and weekend ministry involvement.
“We attended CO in 2012 to further our understanding and relationship with WEC. It was a fantastic time for increasing cross-cultural understanding and gaining skills needed to live in another cultural setting. The small group context, very practical focus and experienced leaders all contributed to a positive, life-changing experience for us.”
Martyn and Wendy
Orientation covers the following topics:
- Principles and Practice of WEC
- Church Planting
- Cultural Adaptation
- Self Care on the Field
- Crisis Management and Personal Security
- Family life (including orientation for children)
- Alpha Marriage course (for couples)
“I’m currently at language school surrounded by dozens of new workers from various organisations. At the risk of feeding pride, WEC’ers appear generally the best prepared. They settled into their new culture quicker, are acquiring the language at a faster rate, making friends with nationals more easily, have more spiritual conversation, and cope better with the stress of transition. I’m sure this is no small part due to the excellent Candidate Orientation every WEC’er undertakes. During my CO I was able to dialogue with seasoned workers giving me a clear framework for contextualisation; when to be cross cultural and when to be counter cultural. The time spent examining the difficulties of suffering, stress, spiritual disciplines, and spiritual warfare helped me come to my region with the right expectations. I’ve been able to cope with trials more easily, as I learned to trust in God and not my own capacity. The time spent living onsite with various cultures was excellent practice. It has helped me resolve conflicts when they have arisen and highlighted weaknesses in my own character which I’d previously been unaware of. I unreservedly recommend WEC CO. It’s not wasted time!”