Norris is convinced that one way God gets our attention is to force us out of our comfort zones. He has seen God use a short-term missions experience time and again to challenge people to think more introspectively about their relationship with Christ and to catch a vision for how God’s love is being shared in other cultures.
Norris says, “CSI Ministries is first and foremost a ministry that focuses on providing short-term mission experiences. It is very inclusive and open to including different denominational perspectives and doesn’t get caught up in what might divide Christians, but rather focuses on what brings us together by meeting the physical and spiritual needs of others. CSI realizes that the outreach is important, but just as important is the individual. Each team member is challenged to deepen their relationship with Christ and to be uncomfortable with the status quo.”
Norris has been involved with CSI for over 25 years. He has organized several spring break teams of university students who have done outreach like bible clubs and construction projects. Norris has been on CSI’s board of directors for about ten years.
He has been in Christian higher education for more than 40 years. He has served in both student life and academic roles and he is currently serving as professor of German and director of student volunteerism at Huntington University. In his own walk, He has become impressed with how important the incarnation of Christ is for the Christian. Just as Jesus became human, we have the obligation to be the hands and feet of Christ, to be a witness to his love and mercy and his concern for the least of these.
Norris has obtained his B.A. from Tabor College in German; M.S. from Kansas State University in higher education administration; and PhD from Purdue University in counseling and development with a cognate in student affairs administration.
He serves on the Huntington County Habitat for Humanity board of directors and has served as vice president and president of the board.
He attends College Park United Brethren in Christ Church and the Huntington Mennonite Fellowship. He regularly attends Sunday school and teaches on occasion.
He and his wife, Grace, have two children and six grandchildren. Their son, Jared is a PhD student at the University of Kentucky where he is studying rural sociology. Jared and his wife have four children, his wife is a nurse. Their daughter Erin and her husband live in Roslyn, Washington (about 80 miles east of Seattle). Erin is a physical therapy assistant and her husband is a fire fighter in the Tacoma/Seattle area. They have two children.
Norris and his wife are both from the Midwest. He grew up in Nebraska and his wife is from Kansas. They lived and worked in Kansas prior to moving to Huntington in 1985.