The Record Summer 2014 - Mandi Gummels '09


Speed Missions: 11 Countries, 11 Months

ThMandi Gummelsis year will go down as the year of adventure for Mandi Gummels – the year elephants passed through her campsite in Zambia, and sunsets over the Baltic Sea raised her standard for beauty; the year of digging holes for fruit trees in Malawi, lumberjacking in Estonia and skirting Latvia’s Soviet-style Karosta Prison, where historically, scores of inmates died. 

These tell only half of Mandi’s adventures; more will come between now and November when Adventure Missions’ 2014 World Race – 11 countries in 11 months to serve “the least of these” – officially ends. By then, Mandi will also have served in China, Mongolia, Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam and Nepal.

Her deep dive into different cultures sometimes still catches the ’09 GC graduate by surprise. The photographer/graphic designer/videographer remembers a time when she harbored no ambition to travel, and her extreme shyness called the shots.

“My comfort zone was very small; I liked being at home in my room,” she explains.

A mission trip to Guatemala during her GC days proved transformational, though. “After Guatemala, I fell in love with experiencing other cultures.”

Mandi’s first missions experience revealed that she was capable of far more than she ever dreamed. That revelation now helps her manage the challenges of the World Race, which require that she and her squad members step out of their comfort zones each day. “We have to choose to trust God with our areas of weakness and have faith that He will give us the courage and wisdom we lack.” 

Mandi Gummels

On the second leg of her 11-month journey, Mandi now leads her team. She encourages others to take risks and step out in faith to embrace God’s leading. “God has so much for each of us, but we’ll never receive it if we don’t take a risk,” she says. 

Click here to learn more about Mandi’s World Race experiences including photos and videos she has compiled along the way. Click here to learn how you can support Mandi.

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