Missionaries: What is the most important thing...

Discussion in 'Missions / Witnessing / eVangelism' started by NaasPreacher (C4K), Nov 7, 2005.

  1. NaasPreacher (C4K)

    NaasPreacher (C4K)
    Expand Collapse
    Administrator
    Administrator

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2003
    Messages:
    26,806
    Likes Received:
    78
    What is the most important thing that churches and people back in the States can do for you?

    I think we can all agree that prayer is the most important. lets talk about things beyond prayer.

    Everyone is welcome to give input.
     
  2. Mexdeaf

    Mexdeaf
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2005
    Messages:
    7,051
    Likes Received:
    0
    In a word- COMMUNICATE!
     
  3. John of Japan

    John of Japan
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2005
    Messages:
    12,208
    Likes Received:
    192
    In another word, care! Get rid of the apathy and obey the Great Commission.

    Read our prayer letters, communicate back with us as Mexdeaf has said, pay attention to our special projects and needs.

    My wife went back to the States for surgery in 1995. The surgery went fine, but in the recovery she had a shower of blood clots into her lungs which almost killed her. I flew back then, of course, to be with her. We had sent letters about it all to our supporting churches in the area, and visited a few of them. In one church the people said, "Nice to have you. Who are you?" The pastor's wife never gave our letter to the pastor! Way to care, supporters!

    However, we praise the Lord for the churches that did care and did much, including Patty's home church.
     
  4. NaasPreacher (C4K)

    NaasPreacher (C4K)
    Expand Collapse
    Administrator
    Administrator

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2003
    Messages:
    26,806
    Likes Received:
    78
    I agree with the sentiments expressed. Caring and knowing what is going on is so much more important than money. I too stopped by a supporting church unexpectedly and was looking at our missionary board. Not a single person knew who we were, even when we introduced ourselves. We had been there for a meeting less than two years before.
     
  5. Mexdeaf

    Mexdeaf
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2005
    Messages:
    7,051
    Likes Received:
    0
    This would be funny if it wasn't so... well, unfunny.

    We stopped at a church. Our recent prayer letter is on the board, along with a 5x7 picture of our family. Someone walks up to me and says 'Hey, Bro. Mexdeaf, how is the (insert anything I mentioned in the posted prayer letter here) going?'

    This has not happened just once, but several times.

    Then we get letters from pastors who threaten to drop our support if they do not get at least a monthly letter from us. And we usually do send out a monthly letter, except during the summer which is our busiest time of year. Then we go to a month and a half or two months.

    The missionary life- too many chiefs, not enough indians.
     
  6. bapmom

    bapmom
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2005
    Messages:
    3,091
    Likes Received:
    0
    Mexdeaf,

    I don't understand what you just wrote....do you mean that people do NOT come up to you and ask you about what's going on in your prayer letters? Some of ours take a few weeks to get from the missionary to us, so there could be developments in the meantime.

    Ive asked missionaries for updates on info from their last letter........


    Our church supports 33 different missionary families. Im the one who types up a couple of them each week to be passed out in the Wednesday night service so people can read them. I try very hard to know who our missionaries are, and to be familiar with them, but its hard for me, and I read basically all the letters we get each week. I know its even harder for those of us who are only reading the couple of letters a week that Im able to put out.
    We do have a bulletin board where we post all of our recent letters, including any pictures sent.

    I just don't want you all to think there's really that many out there who don't care. I think they do, they just get caught up in their own lives and in their own ministries, and its hard to remember everything we have to from day to day for our own selves, much less someone we might only see once or twice in four years. I wish we could see ours more often, they are always my favorite people! But I understand where they need to be, of course.

    Im certainly not saying theres not room for improvement. Im going to do better with corresponding back to our missionaries. I read all their letters, so I feel familiar with them, but I need to remember that they don't read MY thoughts about them, so I need to write them back.
     
  7. gb93433

    gb93433
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2003
    Messages:
    15,496
    Likes Received:
    6
    A church I attended for a long time supported many missionaries. In the foyer are boxes for each missionary. Each box has a copy of the most recent newsletter. Every year in the same month they have a missions conference starting on a Sunday and ending on the following Sunday. In that same church was a Sunday School class of about forty who wanted to go on the mission field. So each of them corresponded with at least one missionary. Each year some of the missionaries got a personal visit from people in the church.
     
  8. bapmom

    bapmom
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2005
    Messages:
    3,091
    Likes Received:
    0
    that sounds neat, gb.

    Did they do fundraisers to be able to go on the visits? or was it mostly personally paid for?
     
  9. Mexdeaf

    Mexdeaf
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2005
    Messages:
    7,051
    Likes Received:
    0
    Bapmom,

    What I meant was people will come up and ask about things that are mentioned on the prayer letter that is posted on the board right behind us.
     
  10. Mexdeaf

    Mexdeaf
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2005
    Messages:
    7,051
    Likes Received:
    0
    Now that sounds like my definition of a 'missions-minded church'!
     
  11. NaasPreacher (C4K)

    NaasPreacher (C4K)
    Expand Collapse
    Administrator
    Administrator

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2003
    Messages:
    26,806
    Likes Received:
    78
    I understand that people get busy, and that they have theor own lives, I really do. I also understand that we may be gone for four more years at a time.

    Yet, in this day of modern communications we send out prayer letters and updates. We have websites and photoblogs, yet people in our supporting chuches still rarely communicate or make comments.

    A church member should at least recognise the names of their missionaries and know where they are located.

    We do have some wonderful churches. The Sunday morning of the incident above we stopped in another supporting church unexpectedly. While we were getting out of the car people were coming up saying things like, "Aren't you the Parrows. We prayed for you this morning." We were overwhelmed at the number of people who knew us. Sunday school teachers were asking us to come to their class and the pastor invited me to the pulpit just to say hello and pray. All this from a BIG church!

    It can be done.
     
  12. NaasPreacher (C4K)

    NaasPreacher (C4K)
    Expand Collapse
    Administrator
    Administrator

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2003
    Messages:
    26,806
    Likes Received:
    78
    Now that sounds like my definition of a 'missions-minded church'! </font>[/QUOTE]Amen - sounds like one of my supporting churches - that church doesn't suppport us does it ;) ?
     
  13. bapmom

    bapmom
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2005
    Messages:
    3,091
    Likes Received:
    0
    I agree, C4K.

    [​IMG]

    I wish more people DID take the time to get to know all of our missionaries.

    A lady in our church just approached me and asked for a list of all of our missionaries so she could start a young ladie's group that acts as penpals for the family. I was so glad that I had already compiled as exhaustive a list as I could get....tried to include as much information about each family as we had. Even looked up old missions letters from some of them to try to figure out how old their kids were and how long they'd been on the field. I hope they use my list well!


    MexDeaf,
    I think I understand now....you mean they made it obvious they hadn't read your prayer letter. That would be hard to handle! [​IMG]


    Im just so in awe of all the missionaries I know that Id hate to see any of you discouraged. I know thats not always possible though.
     
  14. exscentric

    exscentric
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    May 24, 2004
    Messages:
    4,253
    Likes Received:
    16
    When on deputation our mission (100 plus missionaries) sent out a note to every contributer asking if they would be interested in a monthy prayer list for the mission workers.

    There were only two responses, and I was one of them so a majority of one contributer wanted to pray for the missionaries :-(

    I must admit on the churches side, it may not be the missionaries, it is everyone in general. We attended a church for over six months and one morning the pastors wife came up to us and introduced herself and thanked us for visiting their church today.

    People aren't geared to pay much attention to anyone but their immediate family. Not that it is right, but it is reality.

    Be thankful for those that respond to you :D and pray for those that don't [​IMG]

    AND remember some of us old timers can't remember our own names much less yours :(
     
  15. 4His_glory

    4His_glory
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2005
    Messages:
    2,884
    Likes Received:
    0
    I tell churches that I am in that I do not want just supporting churches, both finnacially and through prayer, but I want churches that are willing to share my burden with me.
     
  16. ccrobinson

    ccrobinson
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2005
    Messages:
    4,459
    Likes Received:
    0
    My church is one of the most missions oriented I've ever been around. I don't know how other churches do things, so maybe I can tell you what we do and these ideas can be used at other churches.

    On Wednesday nights, we have an 8 1/2" by 11" page that lists everybody we pray for regularly and the missionaries we support nearly fill one side of the page. Praying for missionaries is a regular part of the prayer time and a different missionary letter is read every week.

    In addition, the Pastor's wife leads the Women's Missionary Fellowship. My wife is involved and I don't know specifics, but I know they work on various projects to help our missionaries. In the 6 years we've been members, there have been 2 entire summer programs devoted to missions. In summer 2004, we had a different missionary preach during each Wednesday night. Maybe some of these ideas can be adopted by other churches to support their missionaries.
     
  17. Servent

    Servent
    Expand Collapse
    Member

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2003
    Messages:
    797
    Likes Received:
    0
    Mexdeaf, can you tell me what part of south texas you are in.
     
  18. John of Japan

    John of Japan
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2005
    Messages:
    12,208
    Likes Received:
    192
    I think I've seen that exact same missionary board! [​IMG]

    On our furlough to take our son to college some years ago, one church still had a prayer card on their world map with him as a baby. We were truly convinced that they cared!! :rolleyes:
     
  19. MikeinGhana

    MikeinGhana
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    Messages:
    356
    Likes Received:
    0
    Everything posted so far has been good. I would add another to the list. Come and visit the field.

    "Mine eye affecteth mine heart..."

    There will be nothing ever done in your ministry that will get churches involved with your work than a group from a church come to see with their eyes what they have been blindly praying for. It asbolutely changes people for the good.
     
  20. NaasPreacher (C4K)

    NaasPreacher (C4K)
    Expand Collapse
    Administrator
    Administrator

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2003
    Messages:
    26,806
    Likes Received:
    78
    Exactly, with the RARE exception every visit here has changed people's lives for the good.
     

Share This Page

Loading...