Do you directly support any missionaries?

A few weeks ago at my church, one of our missionaries came to speak. She told us about the current state of missions and about her work with the underground Church in China. After she was done, our pastor took the stage and, before praying for her, mentioned that she had finally acquired an unfurnished apartment in China and needed some extra funds to furnish it.

In China, “unfurnished” means that there’s absolutely nothing in the apartment: no furniture, no appliances, no bathtub; just the walls and pipes. Needless to say, the church took an offering to cover some of her furnishing expenses so that she could actually live in her new home.

It was an excellent opportunity for the church to respond to a missionary in need. She ended up with 10-20% more than she had asked for.

These days, not every missionary is sent by a single church or denomination. Some just go out on their own, while others go with the support of a non-profit sending organization. But one thing hasn’t changed, regardless of the manner in which they reach the mission field: they all need monetary support. Even if the missionary has a home church, it might not be enough to fully fund their work. And the funding they do receive doesn’t always cover emergencies or special opportunities that come up unexpectedly.

Do you financially support any missionaries?

If you give to your church, chances are you’re at least supporting a missionary indirectly (if not, that raises other questions about your church’s commitment to missions). But do you also give directly to missionaries without the mediation of a church? Can you share any stories about the impact of that giving on the lives and ministry of those missionaries?

Share your thoughts!

10 Responses to “Do you directly support any missionaries?”

  • My family gives via our local church and denomination to missions.
    We also give sporadically to missionaries when needs arise.
    We do not regularly support any missionaries outside these means.

  • Jessica says:

    I give through our church. We have a wide portfolio range of types of mission activities, which all fall under the aligned decision of being disciple making missionaries. We then are also encouraged to “adopt” a missionary by prayer and remembering birthdays and anniversaries.

  • We support mission organizations and missionaries directly. We’re big fans of coming alongside work that often goes unnoticed because larger organizations overshadow them through marketing or through a network that garners the funds through indirect giving. While there are pros and cons to both, we prefer the direct approach as it feels more responsible and lets us play a real part.

    A couple of years ago, our missionary friends (everyone we support is either a friend or becomes one) had a local need in Africa. A women turned to Jesus from Islam and was shunned by her family. An industrious woman, our missionaries contacted us about a desire to purchase land with a small house on it. We jumped on the opportunity. Now, they tell us, the local Muslims see how Jesus is helping a woman flourish whom they shunned in the name of Allah.

  • John Kay says:

    As a missionary I am dumfounded how so few Christians support missions in general and us. I am extremely grateful to those who do!!!

    I have been serving for over 20 years, mostly in SC Asia. I work with “Into Thy Word” prior to that Campus Crusade , training and equipping pastors to know and teach the Bible. We are overwhelmed with work and opportunities to serve our Lord. We are planting, literally, thousands of churches, training over 20 thousand pastors and we have to do this with very little funding or support, because American Christians tend to be so disobedient and apathetic! When one of us shares in US and European churches what we do, with PowerPoint’s and testimony, people roll their eyes and afterwards give us snub comments. Either what we do is not possible or not important to them… go figure…we just love and serve the Lord!

    I am John, using my director’s sign in, because I can’t give my name or location, I am where Americans or Christians can’t be!

  • Julius says:

    We are a small house church in Hong Kong. Most of our giving goes to our missionary friends or full time workers since we do not purchase a place for our meetings. We hire a school assembly hall on a biweekly basis for having bible study and stay at home for worship. By doing this we need not accumulate any assets at all. The only thing we possess is a portable keyboard for hymn singing. We are proud of this way of managing our donations and agree with Fincher that we can be a real partner of the beloved workers.

  • Joel says:

    My wife and I serve on staff as home team missionaries for Gospel for Asia ( We raise our own financial support which enables the ministry to send 100% of field designated funds to the field. We consider it a pure joy and honor to serve our brothers and sisters in South Asia through our efforts here in the US. We chose to serve here, behind the scenes since 80% of the countries we serve in are completely closed to “western missionaries.” We could have gone and taught ESL or under the auspices of an NGO and some church planting on the side. However, we felt our lives would be better served by serving the national missionaries already in their countries preaching and evangelizing the lost. Many of them paying the ultimate price for sharing their faith. While support raising is not easy and keeps us broken before the Lord.

  • Gary P says:

    Our church supports local and abroad missions. Some of us have also participated in an away missions team, distributing a Christian curriculum and educational resources, toys and games via a puppet team to school children. Jesus said do this unto the least of them.

  • Anne E says:

    We belong to a denomination that has more churches abroad than in the US, so we do give through that. Our own church has special ministries to Native Americans & in SE Asia. We give monthly a certain amt. to the Asian orphanages to our church. We have also been supporting a missionary family who came to another church we attended about 15 years ago, and have been giving ever since. Our kids are pastors waiting for the final funds to leave permanently to a country in South America. They are currently living with us, so we give directly to them through their account. We have been supporting kids overseas for many years, but are phasing it out as now, when the children grow up & leave the supporting organizations, we are adding these monies to our kids’ account.

  • Lisa says:

    I supported a missionary couple when I started my first full time job. They joy of giving and knowing that I was helping support the work of making God’s Word accessible in the heart languague of people was great. It’s my responsibility as a Believer to take part in the Coming of God’s Kingdom and this was one way I could be involved personally.

    That same couple was instrumental in my own calling as a missionary. Now serving with the same organization (Wycliffe Bible Translators), I can understand from the perspective of the joy of receiving as well. God is always faithful even when I don’t know where the financial support will come from.

    Even as a missionary I’m still a channel of God’s blessings and I am able to pass it on to others. I worked in a cross-cultural team in my first term and I had the blessing of seeing how God used me to pass financial blessings on to the people it was really supposed to go to!

    The Joy of giving is still in my heart and I look for ways to regularly and faithfully give. The churches are huge in supporting, but most of missionary support comes from individuals. So thank YOU for not thinking your neighbor will give, but being obedient to your part in the SEND Team to help the GO team!

  • calvins w. nakso says:

    I am a missionary currently involved with church planting in the philippines since october 2008. This has been my first love for the past 18 years. It has however, become extremely challenging to sustain this service for the Lord in the face of an increasing difficulty in accessing a seeming dwindling support from an overloaded parent organisation. Perhaps this is partly due to the fact that my sending agency is based not in europe or america but africa.

    This however points to the constantly increasing challenges of cross cultural Int’l missions, whether it involves an american, european or any other nationality. The only difference being that the western missionary can boast of better forms of well established support than his counterpart from a developing economy who is involved in the same kind of work but with only an epileptic support.

    It is therefore gratifying, to find individuals that are committed to giving and supporting missions and missionaries; especially those in foreign lands. You can be sure that your sacrificial giving is the only thing that stands between a successful oversea mission or a failed effort.