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Missionaries are strategic in reaching the least reached groups, but their effectiveness is often hindered by insufficient care. Local churches, together with mission organisations, play a vital role in missions. The question is, however, if we as supporters are sufficiently equipped to give our missionaries the necessary support.

Member Care for Missionaries: A Practical Guide for Senders is a practical resource that equips senders in the comprehensive care of their missionaries. The book was written by Marina Prins and Braam Willemse. They both served as missionaries in Malawi. (Braam passed away in June 2001 due to cancer.)


Part 1, Introduction to Member Care, gives a solid Biblical foundation for Member Care. The definition and importance of Member Care is discussed as well as the role of the different partners (local church, organisation and support structure on the field) in the sending and caring for missionaries.

Part 2, The Life Cycle of the Missionarygives a detailed description of the different phases in the missionary's life as well as the 3 phases in the mission cycle, namely the preparation phase, on-field phase and re-entry.

Part 3, Caring for the Missionary, describes the caring for the missionary in 5 chapters starting at the preparation phase and going right through to re-entry. The assessment of missionaries as well as the role of the support team within a local church is discussed as part of caring during the preparation phase. On-field care as well as re-entry is both addressed in detail in separate chapters. A short chapter on attrition is also included.


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Member Care for Missionaries: A Practical Guide for Senders

By Marina Prins & Braam Willemse

Sendelingversorging:’n Praktiese Gids vir Stuurders
(ISBN Nommer: 978-0-620-28646-6)
Member Care for Missionaries: A Practical Guide for Senders
(ISBN Number: 978-0-620-28967-2)

Book Reviews

Dr. Kelly O’Donnell

This is a solid, foundational work for sending bodies: local churches and agencies to better understand the big picture of missionary care. It overviews the various ways of supporting mission personnel, including home staff, and front line workers, over the course of their missions service. The authors are to be commended for their user-friendly approach as well as their ability to link outside practices with their context in Southern Africa. This is an important book for all those wanting to see missionaries remain healthy and effective. I highly recommend it!

Johann Theron

This publication provides for the critically important facet of the involvement of churches in their task to spread the Gospel. If this book had been published earlier, it could have helped to eliminate many mistakes made in the past.

It is written for a typical South African context and forms an essential part of the tools for any spiritual leader or church grouping that takes their task of spreading the Gospel seriously. It is probably the best practical South African tool to care for workers comprehensively.

The authors succeed excellently in combining thorough research and practical creative ideas. We use it with much fruit in our facilitation of church processes. I can strongly recommend it.

Dr Marjory F Foyle

It gives me great pleasure to write a commendation for this thoughtful book. Some people have had difficulty understanding what Member care is all about, and it is good that the book opens with a clear outline of the Biblical and practical principles behind the provision of missionary care. These form a good introduction to the practical and theoretical material it contains.

One of the strengths of the book is that it clarifies the relationship between local churches, missionaries, and their support structures, for this is an area where confusion may arise.

The practical sections on selection, orientation, care overseas and at re-entry will be very useful. They are instructive not only to missionaries, their sending churches and organisations, but also to the many ordinary church members who want to be better informed on how they should care for their missionaries.

I pray for God's blessing on the book.