One of the best ways that your church can be involved with CMS is by partnering with a specific missionary (or more than one!). If you don’t have a link missionary and would like to enquire about one, please contact your local branch. For ideas about how to best partner with CMS, keep reading!
Encourage your whole church to pray for your link missionary. This can be individually, in their small groups, in their different ministries, such as youth group, kids club, and up the front during weekly services. Signing up to receive your missionary’s regular prayer updates is a great way to stay on top of prayer points—print out copies to give to church members, collect email addresses of those who would like to receive the updates directly, assign someone in your small group or ministry team to be in charge of updating the group on news and prayer points from your link missionary.
Care for your link missionary while they’re on location. Your church or small group could send a care package to them with items they might not have access to (make sure to ask them what they miss and what is appropriate to send to their location). Send them an email letting them know that you’ve been praying for them. Send a video of your church or small group with a message to them.
You can also care for your link missionary while they are back in Australia on Home Assignment. Can you lend them a house, car or holiday house while they’re here? Get in touch with the Branch office to find out what needs they might have. You can also invite their kids along to your church programs or offer to help settle them into local schools. Treat your link missionary to a meal or invite them on an outing with you. There are plenty of ways to make them feel welcome in Australia and in your church community.
While your link missionary is on Home Assignment, they will usually come and visit your church to talk about their ministry. This is a great time to get people excited about cross-cultural mission and to encourage them to recommit to another three years of supporting your link missionary from afar. Take advantage of your missionary’s presence and invite them to visit your small groups, kids club or youth group, as well as your church services. You could even hold a fun special event such as a cultural night, where they can explain in more detail what life is like for them in their location and how their ministry is going.
Could your church do a short-term mission trip to visit your link missionary and help with a specific ministry? Talk with your link missionary and your local branch to see if this would be a possibility. A short-term trip to visit your missionary is a great opportunity to see what their life and ministry looks like and be encouraged to continue partnering with them.