We are coming down to the last two relevant factors suggested for a church missions budget over at 9marks:
Number 6 reads:
Consider setting aside money to help your supported missionaries visit and spend time with your congregation. This will benefit them and your members.
The goal of this point I totally agree with.
It is essential that missionaries be able to visit their supporting churches and spend time with the congregation.
In, practice, I don’t think a church should need to set aside extra money to provide for that visit. Every missionary that I know of has a regular furlough (time visiting supporters in their home country) that is intended for them to visit supporters. Expenses that go along with this are “built in” to the funds they have to raise. So a supporting church shouldn’t have to give extra for a supported missionary to visit.
This is another reason I agreed with Relevant Factor #2 which basically says that a church should give larger amounts to fewer missionaries. If a missionary has many supporting churches, it can be very difficult to schedule visits for all of them.
How to best utilize a missionary while they visit:
Many supporting churches have visiting missionaries they support do the sermon or share a presentation during a Sunday service time.
I think it’s good for the people of the congregation to see the missionary on a Sunday morning, but it often lacks the key thing that is most beneficial for the supporting church:
There ideally should be time allowed for questions and answers.
A short presentation of about 20 minutes with time for questions and answers afterwards is often the best format. This gives people the key information about the ministry, and they can deepen their knowledge of the ministry through questions.
- Here are some good ways that is done:
- The missionary does a presentation and answers questions during Sunday school.
- The missionary visits with small groups of the church during the week.
- The missionary shares at a mens breakfast.
What have been the best missionary visits you have seen?
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