Friday, October 11, 2013

Welcome.

It has been such a gift to return to the U.S. as career missionaries with our first term under our belts.  Our first Homeland Assignment was lengthy and challenging.  The difference is almost palpable. We feel so welcome!  We haven't had to beg a church to host us, in fact, our schedule was almost full when we landed on U.S. soil!

This six-week tour is all about re-connecting.  And it has been sweet to see familiar faces and sit in familiar pews.  And it has been fun telling stories about our time in Uganda, and hearing what the Lord is doing in local churches.  We have enjoyed meals, played board games, and worshiped with the Body of Christ.  And this is only the second week! 

How to Make a Missionary Feel Welcome:

  • Set aside room for them- even if it's just one room.  It is nice to feel like you have "your own space" while you're on the road.  It doesn't have to be spacious or luxurious.  Just a little bit private.  
  • Ask about food allergies and/or preferences.  Most missionaries are pretty flexible and will eat whatever you give them.  But when traveling with kids it's always a nice surprise for them to arrive at a house with their favorite snack on hand. 
  • Greet them in church- ask how they are doing and listen for the answer. 
  • Tell them if you have been keeping up with them online or through their newsletter.  It's nice to know that what they have been publishing is actually being read!  
  • Sit by them at the luncheon.  Not every missionary is an extrovert!  It is nice when church members make the effort and take a seat nearby once in awhile.  
  • Invite them over for coffee if they are in the area for awhile. 
  • Offer to show them around if they are new to the area.  
Some ways other missionaries have felt warmly welcomed:
  • Getting hugs
  • People saying they pray for us every day
  • Showing interest in what we do
  • Someone asking "What can I do?"
  • A lady giving me $5 to help where needed.
  • People signing up to be part of Uganda's Prayer Wall

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