Growing Through Hands-On Missions

In a conversation with a friend not too long ago, she shared that her Women on Mission group had been collecting items for a local ministry. Once all the donations had been collected, the facilitator said she would drop the items off on behalf of the women. Some of the younger women spoke up to say they wanted to assist in taking the items because they wanted to see and experience the ministry themselves.

Seeing the benefit of people becoming part of a ministry is key to promoting missions and growing a missions organization. With daytimes that are filled to the brim, women are no longer excited to attend a missions meeting to just “read a part” in a missions magazine.

Our church’s monthly quilting bees during the winter drew women who could immediately see how they could be a part of ministering to others. For many, it was their first experience in doing missions. They discovered being missional could be fun while we were working on mission action projects. We later had a tea where everyone could display her quilt, and we even invited several women from the associational Hispanic church to attend and pick out a quilt for their family. I’m not sure who benefited the most from this project: our guests or the women who sewed their fingers to the bone making the quilts. But our missions organization benefited as it inspired women to join us as women on mission.

This approach also works well for other age-level organizations. Our Girls in Action still talk about the time they collected almost 4,000 diapers for a ministry 4 hours away from us and how we delivered them and heard from some of the women who benefit from this ministry. This trip helped grow our GA organization. Like our women, our girls want to be a part of missions—hands on, getting dirty, trying new things. It doesn’t matter what age you are; personal ministry is catching.

Susan Bryant lives in Kentucky, where she lives out her passion for missions by serving as president, Kentucky WMU, and a trustee for the International Mission Board. 

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