In terms of the local church sending missionaries, one of the most overlooked areas is missionary care. Providing missionaries with a touch point of Pastoral Care is critical for them to not only maintain a healthy relationship with the church, but also sustain a healthy relationship and share Christ well among the nations. In order to plant healthy churches, we must have healthy disciples. Here is a simple outline or template of a Pastoral Care Plan with touch points:
Purpose: The goal of the Pastoral Care Plan is to have every missionary family and single adopted and advocated for by the church and the pastoral care team.
Limitations: Pastoral Care is intended to provide a base level of encouragement, care, and advocacy. Pastors need not feel the full load of care and advocacy unless desired. Each missionary has access to care through multiple channels including Sunday school classes, community groups, a care team, and missional staff (voluntary or paid).
Details: I ask that pastors consider committing to a missionary family/single and following through on basic touch points of communication and being accessible to the missionary. We want each missionary to feel like our pastors are “in their corner.”
Step 1: Know what you are committing to (suggested touchpoints):
Every Month: Provide a simple touch point. This could be a short email of encouragement, WhatsApp, a handwritten letter, or something of the like.
Every 6 months: Have one Zoom call.
Every year: Send a care package from your family to theirs. If possible, build it into the budget, and do not forget to include shipping cost.
Step 2: Commit to a missionary family/single by:
1) Signing up for available missionaries on the excel document.
2) Send an email to the missionary letting them know that you are committing to be their pastoral advocate.
3) Calendar your monthly touch point so you do not forget!
Step 3: Keep other leaders in the loop as needed. If you need help, have questions, or are concerned about your missionary; please let us know and we will be glad to help.
Adopting a missionary is a simple way you and your Missional Community can begin serving in missions. For information about adopting a Kentucky MSC missionary, visit www.kybaptist.org/adopt-a-missionary. To learn more about adoption options with national and international SBC missionaries, contact the Missions Mobilization Team ([email protected] or 502-489-3530). If you have any questions about setting up a Missionary Care Plan, please contact John Barnet ([email protected] or 502-654-3385).