Schields and a group in Israel
Among the perks of a career in tourism is the chance to travel the world, and Schields recounts numerous memorable experiences, such as cruising in Europe and seeing the ruins at Machu Picchu in Peru. But the lands of the Bible hold a special significance.
“One of the pinnacles for me was visiting the Holy Land,” he said. “Even taking the religious side out of it, I thought it was a great place to visit, with a lot of history, food and culture. I was really shocked by how safe and secure it is — you have Christians and Muslims living together in peace. It was really eye-opening. You have to go into it with an open mind and an open heart.”
Schields aspires to visit places such as Tanzania, Kenya and South Africa, as well as the beaches of Normandy, once his teenage daughters leave for college. Until then, his mission is to inspire churches with the same love of travel that he found as a child.
“I’d like to help more churches to see how travel brings the community to closer together,” he said. “You don’t understand it until you actually do it. I want to find a way to get more churches to embark on a travel ministry.”