Plant seeds of missions in a natural environment.

Stepping outside your comfort zone to discover something that’s bigger than you and more important than now is what CrossVenture is all about. Whether your group spends two hours, two nights, or a week with us without the distractions of technology, you can sense God’s heartbeat for the nations in the beauty of God’s creation.


CrossVenture connects and involves people of all ages, through experiential initiatives, in the ministry of JAARS as it supports Bible translation.


CrossVenture aims to see God’s people engaged collectively and individually in the transformative work of language development and Bible translation.

“I realized that God really speaks to me better when I’m not distracted by technology.”
– CrossVenture Edge participant


Though CrossVenture has expanded, our core focus remains the same.

Our original CrossVenture program launched in 2016 with the goal of helping participants understand the need for missions and Bible translation, and to consider how they can get involved. Using facilities on the JAARS campus that were built in the early 1980s, participants live in a simulated remote village setting called “Belisi” and learn about missions through experiential activities and interactions with real missionaries. In 2021, we rebranded this program as CrossVenture|Village.

In recent years, CrossVenture has grown to include other programs that highlight a specific facet of missions. In 2021, the CrossVenture team partnered with the JAARS Maritime Services team to create a new program: CrossVenture|Coastal! This program is held on the Atlantic coast, where participants get to learn about the support work needed to engage in missions in remote regions that rely on water travel. Participants also learn about water safety, nautical knots, and experience helm time on our boats!

We are excited to be adding a new CrossVenture program in 2022: CrossVenture|Aero! Designed for students ages 13-17, CrossVenture|Aero highlights missionary aviation and the vital role it plays in making Bible translation possible. In addition to exploring missions and Bible translation, participants get to learn about basic aeronautics and experience flight time with qualified JAARS pilots.

Our Staff

Tracy Tooley

Tracy previously served with Wycliffe as a language assessment specialist​ ​in Tanzania. She returned to the USA to fulfill God’s call on her life in youth ministry. After 10 years serving in a local church, she returned to Wycliffe to continue serving within that youth ministry call, first as program coordinator for Jungle Jump Off-IL, then as Director of Next Generation Ministries from Wycliffe’s Orlando headquarters​.​

​In 2015, JAARS invited Tracy to help develop​ ​and implement​ the new CrossVenture program as well as other multi-generational programming and resources. Her goal is to encourage, equip, and engage people of all ages in reaching the last languages through the work of Bible translation. Tracy’s dream is to see a new generation rise up to be torchbearers for the needs of the Bibleless and unreached. ​

Kayla Duckert

Kayla joined the CrossVenture staff as our Outdoor and Multi-Generational Ministry Fellow in 2021 upon graduating college. In highschool, Kayla visited JAARS for a week-long event where she felt God leading her towards an involvement in Bible translation. She went on to study linguistics and biblical Greek at Moody Bible Institute. Kayla loves using her analytical skills to help with the administrative side of the CrossVenture programs, but her real passion is getting to interact with our participants and encouraging them to find their role in God’s redemptive plan for all the nations. In her free time, Kayla enjoys trail running, hiking, and reading classic novels.


“I learned that no matter what God has put in your heart, you can be used in any way in missions. God can use you to impact people, and you are a crucial part of a God’s big plan.”
– Participant, Florida

“My patience has been challenged, and I have had to face my fears. I have been learning about where God might want me in the future.”
– Participant, Illinois

“So glad we came. It stretched each person in different ways while providing a safe environment. The director and staff worked well as a team, resourcing us well, with great passion and love for the Lord and people.” – Youth leader, Ohio