As a pastor, I am always looking for ways to make missions more of a focus in my church. I often talk with other pastors and missions leaders about how churches are highlighting missions. The goal is to see our church’s commitment to missions increase. One idea that is growing in popularity is having a missions month. This is where a church focuses on missions every Sunday of a particular month. This is something I’ve done in the past and plan on doing in the future. There are several benefits I have noticed to having a mission month.
1- A missions month provides time for an extended focus on missions.
The truth is that one week isn’t enough. One week out of 52 is not sufficient time to focus on missions. The church needs a more extended focus on this vital part of God’s plan. A missions month provides an opportunity for that extended focus.
2- A missions month gives everyone multiple opportunities to hear about missions.
I don’t know how it is in your church, but the chances of everyone being there on the week that you focus on missions is probably slim. This means that some families in the church may go a year or two without hearing about or being challenged with the message of missions. A missions month almost guarantees that everyone in your church will be presented with missions multiple times. This can’t be anything but good.
3- A missions month provides opportunities to have a different focus each week.
I have been in a number of one-week missions conferences that have had a singular focus. This is not necessarily bad, but having a missions month gives the flexibility to have a different focus each Sunday of the month. For instance, each week could focus on a different aspect of Acts 1:8 or a different part of the world. Having a different focus each week, encourages church members with different aspects of missions.
4- A missions month gives more time to do creative things.
In a one-week or three-day conference time is limited. This means that opportunities to be creative are also limited. Having a missions month provides more opportunities to think outside the box and do things a little differently.
5- A missions month gives time for the message of missions to sink in through the avenue of multiple speakers.
Typically, there is only one speaker in a one-day, thee-day, or one-week conference. The focus of that speaker, however good it is, is what will be driven home in that conference. Having a missions month allows the opportunity to have a different speaker each week. For instance, in our missions month we had different speaker each week: the pastor of a Spanish church, the director of a mission agency, an overseas national church planter, and a pastor who used to be a missionary in Central America. Our members heard about missions and outreach from several different perspectives, and I think that is a good thing.
A missions month might not be for you, but it can provide some benefits that are worth considering. Give it some thought. You may just find that a missions month is exactly what your church needs.