Mission Teens, Inc. is a non-denominational Christian Discipleship ministry dedicated to helping people who struggle with life-controlling problems by ministering the Gospel of Jesus Christ to them. We believe that the Gospel should be free to all.
Reverend James D. Bracken (1934-2012) founded Mission Teens, Inc. in 1969. He opened the first residential center in Norma, NJ after much prayer. He knew there was a need for a more effective ministry for the troubled young people who were attending his home prayer meetings. After two years of little results in the center, God answered his prayer by dictating to him a program which, when put into effect, brought immediate results in people's lives. This same program is still used today in all of the Mission Teens centers and the results are still phenomenal.
Since 1969, over 20,000 people have come into the various Mission Teens centers. In our annual review, we hear from about 57% of our graduates and, of those, approximately 87% are doing well. In addition, approximately 40% of the non-graduates we hear from are doing well. Many have gone into Christian ministries and some have stayed on to work in our centers.
A DAY AT THE MISSION
We treat each person in our center as a member of the family. Junior staff members and higher ranking residents teach the "younger" residents. Senior Staff and directors handle the major problems and decisions. Each one is expected to do his or her part to make the "family" run as smoothly as possible. There are 5 1/2 hours of Bible study per day, and the training amounts to approximately 1 year of Bible school. There is a comprehensive study of the New Testament and a general study of the Old Testament. The daily schedule varies slightly at the centers, but fundamentally remains the same.
THE TRAINING PROGRAM
Our purpose is to provide hope to the hopeless. It is our goal to direct the people to the Lord Jesus to find love and a purpose for their lives, and to make disciples of them as the Bible directs. The discipleship training program is divided up into four phases, each lasting 2-4 months. As the person proves that he/she can handle the increasing responsibilities of each phase, their privileges will increase. It is a highly structured program with a rigid daily schedule. Everyone is expected to obey the house rules and follow the schedule.
Infractions of the rules or schedule are corrected with writing assignments, loss of privileges or extra work chores. The first phase of the training is a 2-month induction period with very few privileges or responsibilities. Each individual is simply expected to follow the rules and will begin to understand how to seek the Lord.
The next two phases add some general household responsibilities, which will add normal life pressures and cause the person to seek the Lord for help. Privileges in these two phases include phone calls and visits from immediate family (and pastoral or legal counsel) only. No friends are allowed to visit or call any person in the discipleship training. In the final phase, the person is in "counselor training." They will counsel one person each day and make a report to senior staff. They are expected to be a good example in the house and to learn to help others as they were helped.
Upon completion of the program, the person may be offered an additional 10-12 month staff-training program.
FUNDING & EXPENSES
Mission Teens, Inc. is a not-for-profit 501 (C) 3 faith ministry. We do not charge for our services, and we do not receive any funding from the government. All of our support comes from concerned individuals and a few churches who are sensitive to the type of work we do. We do not receive any denominational funding (We are non-denominational). Each of our centers is expected to raise its own support from local sources. We do not charge anyone for the services we provide. Our goal is to help people who have life-controlling problems, such as drug or alcohol addictions, by ministering the Gospel of Jesus Christ to them. We believe that the Gospel should be free to all.
THE APPLICATION PROCESS
Adults (ages 18 and up) can apply to any of our centers for help. Admission is on a bed availability basis. Our centers are open to both men and women. All we ask is that the person is willing to seek God for the answer to all life's problems and be willing to follow the schedule of the program. Prospective residents should call the Overseer at the center of their choice. A preliminary interview will be done by phone or in person.
ONCE YOU’VE CALLED
We do require some initial blood tests (and a pregnancy test for women) before accepting a person. Also, the incoming resident may be required to have a return ticket (or the equivalent). It is important to know that the program is highly structured and if a person is incapable of adhering to program rules and guidelines they may not be permitted to stay. The return ticket is used in the event that we must ask a person to leave.
Any serious health or legal problems should be taken care of before coming into the center. Only emergency medical care will be sought for the person while in the training program, and any medical expenses are the responsibility of the resident. Typically, only non-addictive, non-narcotic medications will be permitted at any center.
Almost all of our staff are graduates of the discipleship training program. They do not receive any salary, but work as missionaries, giving back their life to serve the Lord by reaching out to others. The Assistant Executive Directors at each center work directly with the Executive Director to train the staff, oversee the general condition of the buildings and raise the necessary support, as well as teach, counsel, etc. Each center also has an Overseer who is in charge of daily operations. Anyone seeking admission into a center needs to call the Overseer at that center.
OUR MISSION STATEMENT
The purpose of a Mission Teens Inc. is to witness unto Jesus Christ in the world, in the power of the Holy Spirit, with a particular emphasis to young people, but not to the exclusion of anyone.
We know that Jesus Christ is the answer to everyone's needs. We will provide any and all facilities necessary to evangelize, educate and disciple any persons spiritually, physically, vocationally and psychologically as the Holy Spirit of God leads and directs. We reserve the right to engage in any business we feel led to enter into in order to further the purpose of this Mission.
This organization is to be non-profit, supported by God, through people as He works individually in their hearts, primarily purposed in proclaiming Jesus Christ, to whom be all glory and honor.
This is to be His work; we are His servants.
Our individual purpose is to trust Him, to obey Him and to praise Him. Truly He is worthy of all of our praise.