OK. You’ve heard about Youth With A Mission (YWAM) and Discipleship Training Schools (DTS). You’ve been all over every YWAM website you can find and they’re all advertising a “life-changing” or “amazing” DTS. You know it’s five months long with a two month field assignment in another country. But you still don’t know. What IS a DTS??
Here are the Basics
As you may know, a Discipleship Training School is a five-month long training program. The first three months are called “lecture phase”. This is where different teachers from all over the world come to teach on various topics. The last two months are called the ‘field assignment’ . Your DTS staff members will take you and your team to another country. You'll preach the Gospel and apply what you learned during the lecture phase.
What is Youth With A Mission (YWAM)?
YWAM says on their global website: “Youth With A Mission is a global movement of Christians from many cultures, age groups, and Christian traditions, dedicated to serving Jesus throughout the world.”
Click here to visit YWAM Ships Corpus Christi’s website for more information on YWAM’s core beliefs and foundational values.
Check out the video below to learn more about YWAM!
Why do I have to do a DTS to join YWAM?
Youth With a Mission is a missions organization that exists to know God and make Him known. One of the values of YWAM is “do first, then teach”. This means that you shouldn’t go out into the nations teaching people about God if you don’t first have a healthy relationship with Him. Missions can be done in one of two ways: healthy and honoring, or unhealthy and dishonoring towards the nations you reach. It is just as easy to hurt the people you preach the Gospel to as it is to help them. The YWAM Discipleship Training School exists to help get you started on that healthy journey towards God and missions.
How long is DTS?
The DTS at YWAM Ships Corpus Christi is 5 months long. The first 12 weeks are spent in Corpus Christi during lecture phase. The last 7-9 weeks are spent in a field assignment both locally and globally.
How old do I have to be to do DTS?
You must be 18 years or older to do a DTS at YWAM Ships Corpus Christi.
Is DTS only for single people?
No! Many married couples and families with children often choose to do their DTS together.
Can I do DTS even if I’m not from the United States?
Yes! The YWAM DTS is designed to have local and international trainees. The YWAM Ships Corpus Christi team will be happy to direct you in the Visa process after you send in your application. Click here to get in contact with one of our crew members to learn more!
Here are the Details ~
Where will I live?
During the DTS lecture phase you will live in housing with the other people who have signed up to do the same DTS as you. Each base is different. Some YWAM bases have dorm-style housing on campus. Others rent houses for their DTS trainees to live in. Guys and girls will have separate spaces.
Where will I eat?
You will eat together with your fellow DTS trainees. Meals will be provided during both Lecture and Field Assignment . At some bases you may have access to a kitchen for you to use. Trainees can coordinate carpools to go to local grocery stores to purchase their own personal drinks or snacks.
What do you mean by “lectures”?
You will spend each morning (Monday through Friday) sitting in on lectures in a classroom-type setting. These are 3-4 hour-long teaching times with breaks. Each teaching style is different. You may watch videos, look at power points, or learn hands-on. You'll probably want to take notes.
What topics will I learn about?
Each week you will learn from a different teacher on a different topic. These teachers could be local, international, or through Zoom.
Topics Include but are not limited to:
What is a DTS “track”?
A DTS ‘track’ is a topic or focus that you will learn more about during DTS. This will take place after your morning lectures. It could range from one hour a week, to daily learning time, or weekends. You will have a staff member to train you during that focus time. Examples include: learning the basics of sailing during a sailing track, or learning how to study and teach the Bible during a Bible track.
What do “DTS Staff” do?
Your DTS staff are here to facilitate your training time throughout the whole five months of DTS. They will sit in on your lecture time with you, lead ‘track’ times, live with you, and go on the field assignment with you. You will also have a meeting with one of your staff members each week called a one-on-one. This will be time to process through the week and look forward to the next. Your DTS staff will have been planning DTS months in advance. They help decide teachers and plan the field assignment.
What will a typical day look like?
Weekdays during lecture phase could look something like this:
Will I get time off?
DTS is an action packed time of your life with a full-time schedule. Every week is different- some slower and some more active. For the most part evenings and weekends are for fellowship, reflection, and relaxation, but there are times when we go out as a group and do ministry.
What will I do besides enjoy lectures?
DTS isn’t all sitting down and listening to someone talk. Here are some things you’ll do as well:
Your chosen DTS “Track”
To learn more, see the previous question, “What is a DTS ‘track’?”
Small Groups and One-on-Ones
These will be led by your DTS staff. This is a chance for you to process what you’ve learned and build relationships with your fellow trainees.
Community Night Dinners
An opportunity every week to spend time with the entire YWAM Ships Corpus Christi family and others in the community. This is a chance to get to know other crew members on your YWAM campus and build friendships outside of DTS. All YWAM bases do this.
To help you prepare for your field assignment, you will spend time giving back to the community within and surrounding Corpus Christi. Your DTS staff will accompany you as you pray for the city, participate in local ministries, work on community projects, and more.
Sometimes, a teacher may give you ‘homework’ or something to read up on before your next class. This could include a journal, reading a certain book or passage in the Bible, and more.
You will also have practical work assigned throughout the week. This may include clean-up after meals, gardening/outdoor maintenance, cleaning the boat after use, cooking dinner/lunch, or other needs the base may have.
Worship and Intercession
It is so important to spend time worshiping the Lord and praying for the nations. YWAM Ships Corpus Christi spends time throughout the week focusing on this.
Of course you will have free time throughout the week to spend as you wish. Corpus Christi has so much to offer with beautiful beaches, adorable coffee shops, an aquarium, board-walk by the ocean, and more!
What does the cost include?
Here’s a breakdown of some of the things your lecture and outreach fees include:
The Field Assignment:
Where will we go?
Every DTS and field assignment is different. You have the opportunity to go anywhere in the world. YWAM Ships Corpus Christi has a focus on the Caribbean and Central America. As we are a Ships base, it could also be held in any coastal region around the world.
Where will we stay?
Again, every field assignment is a different adventure! You may stay in churches, the homes of locals, hotels, hostels, in a campground, etc.!
Who will be my teammates?
Your teammates will be your fellow DTS trainees. These are people that you get to know throughout your lecture phase. You will live together, study together, and then go on the field assignment together.
What will we do?
The field assignment includes a large range of activities. The short answer is that you will be preaching the Gospel and applying the things you learned during lectures. If you have a specific track during your DTS you may spend some of your outreach time on those activities. For example, if you did a Bible track during DTS then you may spend some of your field assignment time teaching the Bible to the local community.
Here’s a non-exclusive list of ministries you may have the opportunity to participate in while on field assignment:
What will a typical day look like?
Every outreach is so different from the next. It is hard to say what each day will look like; however this is how a typical day on outreach could look:
We hope this helps answer some questions you may have; however we understand this may not have covered everything. Have a question that didn’t get answered? Leave a reply below and one of our crew members would be happy to give their best answer for you!