SET AN ANNUAL DATE TO HOLD A MISSIONS CONFERENCE
We run our conference from Wednesday night through Sunday night. Pick the best time of the year for your church and keep the conference dates at the same time every year. Put the date on the calendar at least one year in advance. January or February are great months for a Missions Conference.
SELECT A THEME AND USE A BIBLE VERSE FOR THE MISSIONS CONFERENCE
- “To the Uttermost” – Acts 1:8
- “To the Cities and Villages Beyond” – Matthew 9:35
- “Now” – Acts 26:17
- “That All the World May Know” – John 17:23
- “So Send I You” – John 20:23
- “Go Ye” – Matthew 28:19
- “To Every Creature” – Mark 16:15
- “Here Am I, Send Me” – Isaiah.6:8
- “For God so Loved the World” – John 3:16
- “To the Regions Beyond” – Acts 1:8
- “Sending Forth Labourers” – Matthew 9:38
- “Into All the World” – Mark 16:15
- “Beyond Borders” – II Corinthians 5: 7
- “United for World Missions” – Philippians 1:27
- “A Heart” – Matthew 6:21
- “Launch Out into the Deep” – Luke 5:4
- “The Call is to All” – Luke 5:32; Acts 2:39
- “Gateway to the World” – Matthew 28:18-20
- “Growing Stronger, Reaching Farther” – Colossians 2:7
- “Walking in the Footsteps of Jesus” – Luke 5:32
- “Labourers Together with God”- 1 Corinthians 3:9
- “The Prize is Worth the Price” – Philippians 3:14
- “God is Able” – Ephesians 3:20
- “By All Means” – I Corinthians 9:22
- “With God” – Mark 10:27
- “By Faith” – Hebrews 11:8
SECURE THE PREACHERS WHO WILL PREACH YOUR CONFERENCE
Look for a preacher that will properly explain the importance of faith promise missions giving and inspire your people to get personally involved in supporting missions through the local church. Search for a preacher that has passion and a burden for souls and the Gospel. If there is no power in the pulpit, there will be no purpose or push in the pews.
We schedule two preachers for our conference: one preacher will preach Wednesday night through Friday night; the other preacher will close it out on Sunday. I try to schedule a younger man of God and an older man of God.
SCHEDULE THE MISSIONARY FAMILIES THAT YOU WANT TO ATTEND THE CONFERENCE
Schedule missionary families to attend six to twelve months in advance. Find out all their details at the time of scheduling.
- Individual information: names, ages, birthdays, anniversary, and how many will be attending the conference.
- Travel plans: date and time of arrival, date and time of departure. Since our conference begins on Wednesday and ends on Sunday night, I have always encouraged people to arrive on Tuesday evening and leave the following Monday morning. This will allow us time to get to know them and to be a blessing to them.
MAKE THE MISSIONS CONFERENCE FIRST CLASS
Decorate the church according to the theme one to three weeks in advance, especially the auditorium.
Start taking an offering for the speakers’ travel expenses and love offering three to four weeks in advance. You also want to make sure that all missionary families are well cared for while they are with you. In time, add to your yearly budget the travel expenses of the special speakers and missionaries, as well as other conference expenses.
One to two months in advance, arrange the lodging for the special speakers and the missionaries. (This time frame would depend on how busy your city is and the availability of lodging.)
Ask the church family members to assist where needed in providing lodging and/or the evening meals at the church for the pastor, staff, special speaker and missionaries. Meals served two hours before each service is best for younger missionary families with small children and giving individuals time to prepare for the service, pick up visitors, etc.; however, after church would be another option if it allows church families to participate.
Ideas of gifts to the special speakers and missionary families:
- Pre-paid phone cards
- Pre-paid gas cards
- Pre-paid gift cards
- Car wash certificates
- McDonald’s coupons, etc.
- Have ladies’ and girls’ hair done
- Take men and boys to the barber shop
- Provide their needs through the church’s Missionary Closet
- Buy the ladies and girls dresses
- Buy the men and boys suits
USE COMMITMENT CARDS DURING YOUR CONFERENCE
Design different colored Faith Promise Commitment Cards–one color for the children and teenagers and another color for the adults. Pass these cards out, explaining their purpose, to everyone during services starting two weeks before the conference, and then nightly during the conference to those who still need one. Ask the congregation not to turn in their cards until Friday night. On Friday night at the end of the service, ask families to sit together and pray for the Lord to guide them in their giving. Collect the commitment cards on both the Friday and Sunday of the conference.
ADDITIONAL MISSIONS CONFERENCE IDEAS
Prepare the peoples’ hearts by assigning various people to give testimonies about faith promise giving during services two weeks before the missions conference. Have a season of fasting and prayer two days before the conference begins.
Two months before the conference, ask the missionaries to send you a list of some of their needs and desires and ask God to burden someone to help meet the need during the conference. Type these needs up on paper and hand them out to your people at least two weeks before the conference. Also, put this list on a bulletin board so the people can come by and check off an item once it is purchased. Have a “Missionary, We Love You Night” or “Missionary Christmas Night” on Thursday night. Have missionaries to come to the front of the auditorium. Provide a nice chair for the wife, have the children to sit on the floor and the husband to stand. Thank the missionaries for their sacrifice, express your love, and tell them that “we,” the church, would like to meet some needs in their lives. As a song begins, have the people informed to come and present their gifts.
Plan activities and classes that will provide a chance for missionary families to interact with church families. Schedule a time for missionary wives to give a testimony to the ladies and teenage girls on Sunday evening before the church service. The meeting time could be called “Lady of God,” “Precious Jewels,” “Evening of Grace,” or “Evening of Delight.” You could also assign missionaries to teach the S.S. classes. Another idea would be to host an international supper, with members providing food representing different countries, on Sunday night after the service.
If you have a Christian school or Bible college, you could have all the young people that have formally surrendered to be missionaries to put up their display along with the missionaries’ displays. You could then give the missionaries a “Judge Sheet” and have them to judge these displays and give away prizes for first, second, and third places.
Before the special speaker and missionaries arrive for the conference, decorate their rooms nicely. Place a welcome letter with a little spending money, the phone number of their assigned host, and your personal number in each letter. Arrange for the special speaker to have a car or a designated driver for the week.
Help missionaries on deputation by giving them needful contact information of other churches.