Definition of mission in English:



  • 1An important assignment carried out for political, religious, or commercial purposes, typically involving travel.

    ‘a trade mission to Mexico’
    • ‘A man who has led some amazing missions in different parts of the country was in York to talk to church leaders from all over North and East Yorkshire and York itself about plans for a mission to the region next year.’
    • ‘There are people who have already been assigned a mission to infiltrate and spy from the beginning.’
    • ‘And it is with this motto that he has undertaken the mission to walk throughout the country.’
    • ‘He entered the diplomatic service in 1856 and one of his first tasks was to lead a mission to Central Asia in 1858.’
    • ‘Once stability has been restored, plans will be drawn up for a trade mission to the country.’
    • ‘Indonesia and Spain have agreed to send more trade missions in the future in a bid to further promote trade relations between the two countries.’
    • ‘A factory foreman embarks on a dangerous mission to occupied France to retrieve important machinery.’
    • ‘After first realising the export possibilities while on a trade mission to Kuala Lumpur, Scrimgour made a concerted effort to discover new markets in developing countries.’
    • ‘A hate crime task force has launched a mission to encourage victims of abuse, harassment and assault to report crimes.’
    • ‘During a long conversation with a senior administration official, I asked why Wilson was assigned the mission to Niger.’
    • ‘In addition, military-transport obligation does not apply to diplomatic missions and consular offices of foreign states.’
    • ‘Juni and Carmen undertake a renegade mission to an uncharted island full of strange creatures and enemy agents, with Gary and Gertie in pursuit.’
    • ‘The team undertook a fact-finding mission to assess how violence had affected minority women.’
    • ‘The charge followed a fact-finding mission to the capital Sofia by Sir John Ramsden, head of the Foreign Office central and north-west Europe department.’
    • ‘Modest EU missions have been sent to Macedonia, Bosnia and the Congo.’
    • ‘Family members of Sept.11 victims traveled on a peace mission to Iraq in January.’
    • ‘Likewise, some countries in the Middle East have also sent missions to the Philippines.’
    • ‘But the mission to India in 1942 was enough of a success to elevate Cripps to the job of leader of the House of Commons and into the war cabinet as minister of aircraft production.’
    • ‘They had an important mission to do, and he needed to remain focused.’
    • ‘As the Australian Crime Commission was being formed, the junior detective was sent on an important mission to Cambodia.’
    assignment, commission, expedition, journey, trip, errand, undertaking, operation
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    1. 1.1[treated as singular or plural] A group of people sent on a mission.
      ‘by then, the mission had journeyed more than 3,500 miles’
      • ‘A joint government-Anglo-Jewish mission was sent out in May 1939 to Africa to assess appropriate settlement sites.’
      • ‘He said Indonesia and Malaysia would also form a joint mission to oversee and assess the reports made by the fact-finding mission.’
      • ‘Even a UN security mission sent in to assess the situation had to turn back before reaching Mazar because it was too dangerous to proceed.’
      delegation, deputation, commission, task force, legation, representation, delegacy
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    2. 1.2[in singular] An organization or institution involved in a long-term assignment in a foreign country.
      ‘the head of the West German mission’
      • ‘He was the medical doctor in charge of St. Mary's Hospital, a Catholic mission in Gula.’
      • ‘However, Pearson grew up on a Lutheran mission station.’
      • ‘Within a week, he had visited a seventy-five-mile area and established missions in four tribal villages.’
      • ‘Baptists established missions to Aborigines and the urban poor.’
      • ‘On the outbreak of hostilities, diplomatic missions in enemy countries close down and the diplomats depart.’
      • ‘She established the Methodist mission hospital at Ikkadu near Madras, where she also served as a district magistrate.’
      • ‘And in the span of a year, 46 nations have established or re-established diplomatic missions or embassies in Iraq.’
      • ‘By the end of the nineteenth century, both Protestants and Catholics had established missions in the region.’
      • ‘Those alliances are visible in the very stones and wood of the mission buildings.’
      • ‘During the second century, a vigorous Christian mission in North Africa established a large number of congregations for whose use the Greek Bible was translated into Latin.’
      • ‘Christian missions were also establishing school in the region.’
      • ‘The appeal was set up after his most recent visit to the Christian Brothers run mission at Lukulu in Zambia.’
      • ‘In 1996 a small mission hospital called the Good News Hospital was opened in Mandritsara, a market town in the northern interior of Madagascar.’
      • ‘At that time Catholic, Protestant, and Orthodox missions were established.’
      • ‘Christian missions established a presence in the late 19th century and continue to play a role in Cameroonian life.’
      • ‘All these factors restricted missionaries consequently they tended to establish missions along the Kavango River and to avoid the interior.’
      • ‘In 1814 a small Christian mission was established, with little success at first, but progress by mid-century.’
      • ‘To introduce Indian culture to this crowd, the mission organizes a charity event called as ‘Sakura Bazaar’ each year.’
      • ‘For a time, these missions became powerful institutions in colonial South America.’
    3. 1.3 An operation carried out by military aircraft.
      ‘he was shot down on a supply mission’
      • ‘American missions and RAF operations continued in support of the beachhead.’
      • ‘Air superiority over the battlefield was retained at all times and the Air Force flew effective army co-operation and tactical reconnaissance missions.’
      • ‘There had always been questions as to whether the B-36 could accomplish its assigned mission.’
      • ‘Tony, who'd flown seven combat missions at the time, hadn't faced many threats.’
      • ‘He and his crew of nine were the first to complete 25 combat missions while operating out of England.’
      • ‘So why use strategic airlift assets to carry out an airdrop mission with impact at the strategic level?’
      • ‘Five fighters and two bombers were assigned a mission to drop propaganda leaflets on the city.’
      • ‘The A109M can carry out various missions and operations in hot temperatures and high altitudes.’
      • ‘There have been special operations, bomber, missile and reconnaissance missions at the base over the years.’
      • ‘And with troops missing and a British plane down, several search and rescue missions have been flown.’
      • ‘Group Captain Oddie said the mission already had aircraft well placed.’
      • ‘The A - 50 carries out patrol missions at an altitude of 5,000 to 10,000 metres.’
      • ‘Some KC - 135 aircraft have been configured for other missions, such as reconnaissance and as a flying command post.’
      • ‘The military has been using unmanned, ground-controlled reconnaissance aircraft on missions over Iraq and Kosovo.’
      • ‘As a special operations weather specialist, he supported combat search and rescue missions that used special operations aircraft.’
      • ‘These tree skimming aircraft run reconnaissance missions deep into enemy territory, locating and taking out supposed threats.’
      • ‘I did not see any enemy aircraft on the mission, just a lot of flak over Holland.’
      • ‘The pilot vanished on 31 July 1944 while flying a reconnaissance mission.’
      • ‘It was the first time since the Vietnam War that Royal Australian Air Force aircraft have flown close air support missions in support of Australian ground troops in a war zone.’
      • ‘Malaysia has also pledged to send personnel to Indonesia and has provided two military aircraft for rescue missions.’
      sortie, operation, raid
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    4. 1.4 An expedition into space.
      • ‘The current plan for a human mission to Mars entails nine months of travel time in each direction in addition to one year on the planet itself.’
      • ‘Next month, NASA hopes to launch one of the most historic space exploration missions it has ever mounted.’
      • ‘One boy asked if NASA would send missions to other planets, such as Mars.’
      • ‘Early tomorrow morning, China will send its second crewed mission into space.’
      • ‘China's plans for space exploration include unmanned missions to the moon and Mars in the next decade.’
      • ‘Are the scientific returns on a manned mission to Mars inherently important enough to justify its costs?’
      • ‘The future role of Nasa has been thrown into question by a high-profile report that concludes the agency is not able to send crewed missions to the Moon and Mars on its own.’
      • ‘The importance of the mission to the scientific community is due to both the presence and the composition of the atmosphere.’
      • ‘The two NASA missions are being honored in the Aviation and Space category.’
      • ‘Prizes have been proposed for other aspects of space exploration, including missions to Mars.’
      • ‘He is a veteran of four space flights and five space walks, including two missions to the Hubble Telescope.’
      • ‘I am told that the idea of using this method of designing planetary missions was due to a graduate student - some years ago.’
      • ‘Despite that, he said the grounding of future shuttle missions opens the station to risk.’
      • ‘It calls for new robotic missions, new space vehicles, and new destinations.’
      • ‘There is additional evidence that points against China planning near-term manned lunar missions.’
      • ‘Compared with the billions squandered on a vague mission in Iraq, a mission to Mars seems cheap.’
      • ‘Another of NASA's most successful missions today sent back spectacular new pictures of Mars.’
      • ‘For the next three years, at approximately six-month intervals, NASA sent more manned missions to the moon.’
      • ‘If all goes ahead as planned, the orbiter will remain above Mars, once its work is done in 2004, to act as a communications satellite for future missions.’
      • ‘The agreement covers Space Shuttle missions supporting the International Space Station.’
      journey, voyage, tour, odyssey
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  • 2The vocation or calling of a religious organization, especially a Christian one, to go out into the world and spread its faith.

    ‘the Christian mission’
    ‘Gandhi's attitude to mission and conversion’
    • ‘They agitate for power on the clericalist assumption that the Church and her mission belongs to the bishops.’
    • ‘America is a Catholic magazine in the service of the Church and her mission.’
    • ‘This usurps the sovereignty of God and places human speculation at the center of the Christian mission, which is inevitably fallible.’
    • ‘As expressed in the catechism in the Book of Common Prayer, the mission of the church is made explicit as the body of Christ.’
    • ‘The guiding principle for the Church in its mission is that it is concerned especially with people for their own sakes and for Christ's sake.’
    • ‘Its purpose is to express the nature of Christian faith in terms of the mission of the Church.’
    • ‘Their faith and their commitment to God's mission were clear.’
    • ‘And to share in Christ's mission involves trusting Jesus above everything else.’
    • ‘Constants in Context is a survey of missiology, or the ways the church carries out its mission in the world.’
    • ‘As expressed in the baptismal theology of the 1979 Book of Common Prayer, the mission of the Church is given in its life as the body of Christ.’
    • ‘The majority of Catholics have little appreciation of their mission to spread the faith as a precious gift intended for all.’
    • ‘There is the one charged with the task of organizing the Christian mission in Britain and drawing it together as one Church.’
    • ‘This means that its interpretation is properly ecclesial, serving the mission of the church.’
    • ‘Even if the act does remain secret, taking that risk greatly wrongs Jesus, the Church, and her mission.’
    • ‘Those who are serious about Christian missions should work not only to develop their own specialized code of ethics but to name and shame its violators.’
    • ‘The public debate has tended to concentrate on the criticism of the Catholic Church for a venture which was seen to be more like to the mission of the Evangelical Churches.’
    • ‘The reasonable restoration of discipline requires a renewed vision of the very purpose and mission of the church.’
    • ‘The issue of religion and politics takes on a deeper dimension when we come to consider ideas about the mission of the Christian church.’
    • ‘In light of the mission to spread the gospel, the division of the churches seemed pragmatically ineffective and theologically scandalous.’
    • ‘Convey said that the bishops have come to believe that the education of the urban poor is one of the church's missions.’
    vocation, calling, pursuit, goal, aim, quest, undertaking, purpose, function
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    1. 2.1 A building or group of buildings used by a Christian mission.
      • ‘This same team will be building missions, weapons, and new features for years to come.’
      • ‘Economic recovery was painful but rapid, and by 1870 the church had even built its first mission.’
      • ‘Security was beefed up across the capital last night, especially around hotels and diplomatic missions, police said.’
      mission post, mission station, missionary organization
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  • 3A strongly felt aim, ambition, or calling.

    ‘his main mission in life has been to cut unemployment’
    • ‘He may well be a man with a mission - to stamp out pedophilia at its highest level - but it's a mission far to ambitious for one man.’
    • ‘It's fairly strict, and one of my main missions in trying to be a better songwriter is to learn how to properly break all the rules.’
    • ‘Even if your folks make fairness their main mission in life, they could never dole out exactly the same goodies at precisely the same time to all their kids.’
    • ‘Clearly, we must actively and forcefully explain the importance of our fundamental mission to policy leaders and the general public.’
    • ‘Given his book that was published yesterday, he talks very strongly about his mission.’
    • ‘He always thought that his main mission in life, and his greatest pleasure, was in teaching the deaf.’
    • ‘In Oregon, some wounded members of the National Guard have made it their mission to make sure their fellow soldiers get the welcome that they deserve.’
    • ‘But today, I had a mission, a mission to go to the library and finish my history project.’
    • ‘Dr. Phil has made it his mission to help find Holloway.’
    • ‘The academy's mission is to send out the message that women are not weak and will stand up against abuse.’
    • ‘These three themes represent the political/social mission of Canadians.’
    • ‘His mission was to spread the word of God to people living in the depths of the Amazon rain forest.’
    aim, goal, purpose, objective, object, grail, holy grail, target
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Mid 16th century (denoting the sending of the Holy Spirit into the world): from Latin missio(n-), from mittere send.