TIMO (Training In Ministry Outreach)

“Every day here in Sudan my team-mates and I strive to be a living witness (though imperfect) of our living God.”


Who should join a TIMO team?

TIMO is a training program designed for people who are committed to reaching the unreached with the Gospel but need a ‘bridge’ to get there.  Generally, TIMO works best with single young adults or couples without children.  However, some locations and teams lend themselves to families as well.  Team members should come with some prior training in Bible, missions and/or other practical/professional skills.  While a degree or diploma is not required by TIMO certain countries require a level of training before they will grant a visa.

What is included in a TIMO team's schedule?

TIMO teams include 7 basic elements:  language learning throughout; six training units; weekly team days; reading and writing papers; home stays with local families; a one month exposure to a different ministry; personal discipleship (both as a disciple and as a disciple-maker).

What does the application process involve?

The application process to join a TIMO Team is the same as for Full Term personnel.  We hope that many of those who join TIMO teams will continue on in full-time ministry.  So completing all of the application paperwork before TIMO will allow you to move directly into another ministry assignment – possibly continuing in the same location as your TIMO team.

Can I join a TIMO team currently in progress?

The nature of the TIMO curriculum and the need for good team dynamics necessitates that all team members begin the team at the same time and follow through to complete the whole program.  It doesn’t work to add new members late or have team members leave early.  If you would like to get a taste of what TIMO is all about, consider joining a one-month TIMO Quest team.

Which TIMO teams are currently available?

The list of upcoming TIMO Teams is always changing.  Contact your Provincial Mobilizer who will provide the most current information.  If you’re not sure who to contact, complete the Ministry Interest Form and we’ll connect you with the right person.

Who leads a TIMO team?

Team leaders are carefully selected and trained.  They may be experienced AIM missionaries or African missionaries (most often with TIMO team experience).  They are equipped to lead the team through the curriculum which is a good balance between academic study and practical application.  Team leaders also provide the support that you need when you enter into an unreached people group.  Team leaders move into the community as much as 1 year in advance of the team’s arrival to build relationships, learn language, and prepare housing for the team members.

How long is a TIMO team?

TIMO teams general run for 2 years but occasionally teams will last for 2.5 years.

What happens after TIMO is over?

TIMO is a strategic way that AIM uses not only to train new cross-cultural workers for ministry among unreached people groups but also to establish church-planting ministry in a new area.  While 2 years is long enough to begin the process, our experience is that there needs to be follow-up ministry in the same location after the team is over.  Our hope is that some of the team members, who already know the language and culture, will commit to returning to the same location (or nearby) to continue the process of establishing new churches and training church leaders.  If God leads you to another ministry within AIM or with another organization, we’re happy to facilitate that.  We want to discern together what is best for you.

Training In Ministry Outreach (TIMO) offers new missionaries an opportunity to be equipped for a lifetime of ministry. At the same time, it enables them to have an active role in bringing the Good News of Jesus Christ to one of Africa’s unreached or least-reached people groups.

Teams consist of 6 to 12 members and the team leaders, usually an experienced missionary couple.

Together, they live among a host people group for two years, learning the language of the people and seeking to proclaim the good news of Jesus Christ through word and acts of love.  TIMO provides a structured training program designed to lay a foundation for effective cross-cultural church planting.

As a team member you’ll learn to live simply as you become a move in to a new community. You’ll learn to pray and intercede. Ministry in Africa is all about building relationships with people with a focus on who we are (our personal character) more than what we ‘do’.

The TIMO curriculum is designed to provide a solid theological and theoretical basis for ministry.  Team members complete required reading and papers which are discussed together as a team.  And every day, you’ll practice what you learn; mission theory will become concrete  as you live and interact with your host people group.

An Unreached People Group – Your Host Culture

In addition to providing excellent training, TIMO teams have been used by God to provide first contact in locations where there is no church yet.  In some locations, a small church emerges over the course of the two years.  New believers are taught scripture and discipled.  We hope that some of the team members will return to the same location (or one close by) when they continue their ministry in Africa.  Hopefully over time more believers will be added, leadership will be developed and a church-planting movement will emerge in the tribe the team reaches out to.

As a TIMO team member you will:

  • Live simply
  • Learn a new language
  • Share the Good News of Jesus Christ with the least reached
  • Minister as part of a team
  • Learn and minister under the guidance of experienced missionary team leaders

The ideal TIMO team member demonstrates:

  • a mature and growing relationship with Jesus
  • a commitment to cross-cultural evangelism and discipleship and a willingness to consider long-term missions
  • the attitude of a life-long learner
  • the ability to think critically
  • a flexible spirit
  • the ability to work well in a team, accepting the direction of team leaders and mutual accountability with other team members

To learn a whole lot more about TIMO visit  aimint.org/timo/mission/

TIMO Application Process

Step One:

Fill out the Ministry Interests Form, which will be directed to your local Provincial Mobilizer.

Step Two:

Wait for your Provincial Mobilizer to get in touch.

Step Three:

Once you’ve interacted with your Provincial Mobilizer, he or she will give you access to an application form. Your Provincial Mobilizer will be your point-person throughout the process, and will help answer any questions you may have along the way.