December 12, 2017

Ideas for Implementing a Missions Conference

Matt Recker

Missions is the mission of the church. We must not grow weary in seeking to bring the Gospel to every person in every nation of the world. We recently had a Missions Conference and it greatly refreshed not only my soul but our entire church as well. A Missions Conference is important. It enlists greater prayer support for missionaries from the church, it establishes a closer contact between the church and the missionary, and it encourages an increased financial commitment of the corporate body to share the Gospel across the street and across the sea. Most importantly, a Missions Conference is a focused opportunity to establish for the church family that missions is for the glory of God.

Here are a few things that worked well for us and might also encourage you as you implement and carry out your Missions Conference.

1. Pray for the conference in prayer meeting and from the pulpit leading up to the special meeting. Without the Lord Jesus Christ, we can do nothing.

2. Invite members to form a Missions Conference planning committee, or else meet with your already established Missions Committee members. We do not have a set committee, so I asked people to join me to help plan our Missions Conference. Brain storm with your committee, both sharing your ideas and listening to theirs. Will you have regular services, missionary testimonies, presentations, women’s or men’s fellowships, outings, or outreaches? Five of our members joined our committee and a number of great ideas were shared.

3. Our group arrived at a theme. A theme ought to be rooted in Scripture, challenging to the church, and one that relates to the speaker’s missionary burden. Recently our Missions Conference theme was “Arise! Go! Preach,” which comes from Jonah 3:2. One of our creative committee members came up with it. God called Jonah to the violent Ninevites, and this was appropriate for our conference as it directly applied to our keynote speaker who is called to a Muslim country.

4. Our missions committee decided to have a Wednesday combined service, a Thursday Women’s Night, a Friday Men’s night, a Saturday Morning Evangelism Outreach followed by a lunch together, and a Sunday service culminated by an International Supper.

5. Committee members were asked to carry out specific areas. One had the idea to give specific gifts to the missionaries. He contacted the mission boards for our missionaries to see what special needs and tastes the missionaries had. His idea also required our church to have an offering in order to purchase gifts specific to their needs. Our church enjoyed this project. The offering was far higher than I expected, and when the gifts were presented to the missionaries there were tears being shed.

6. Another had an idea to make a missionary banner, which she carried out. This banner was used for our PowerPoint and also in our missionary brochure.

7. Another committee member was willing to oversee the International Supper and to sign up our church family to bring food and organize the supper. The supper was a great blessing and many of our people prepared meals from their home country.

8. Another of the ladies on the committee organized and planned the women’s night, and a man organized the men’s night.

9. We are not a big church and it is difficult for us to have a large number of missionaries at our conference. One of our committee members contacted our missionaries and asked if they could send a video welcome. This worked out great. We had only two missionary families with us for the actual conference, but we shared three video presentations of missionaries we support, so in all we felt a strong connection from five of our missionary families.

10. Organize a church missionary evangelistic outreach. The missionaries especially enjoyed this, and it was fun for our church family to evangelize with our missionaries. After the outreach we met in our church and had a fried chicken luncheon together. One of the missionaries remarked to me, “Keep this as a part of your conference.” Missionaries often starve to do outreach with the church.

11. Print up a Missionary Conference brochure. In the brochure share your vision for having a Missions Conference, your mission philosophy, a conference schedule, bios of the speakers, and importantly, a listing of all the missionaries and their contact information. We challenged our members to pray for our missionary family as they are an extension of our church. We encouraged our people that to unite with our church is to unite with these missionaries in preaching the Gospel to the uttermost part of the earth.

12. Recognize and thank the Missions Conference committee members before the church. Pray and thank God for your team members before the church and let everyone be aware of their invaluable contributions for the conference.

These are just a few ideas we put into practice. If you have any other notions feel free to share them as well. May God give us an enlarged heart to preach the Gospel to every creature in every nation.

Matt Recker is the pastor of Heritage Baptist Church in New York City.

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