Missions Policy of. Faith Community Church of Gambrills, Inc Riedel Road Gambrills, Maryland Missions Policy of

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1 Missions Policy of Faith Community Church of Gambrills Missions Policy of Faith Community Church of Gambrills, Inc Riedel Road Gambrills, Maryland I. PURPOSE: A. The Scriptural Purpose of Our Church s Involvement in Missions To fulfill the Great Commission of Christ (Matt. 28:19-20, Mark 16:15, Luke 24:47, John 20:21, Acts 1:8) B. Definition of Missions Any endeavor outside our local congregation to fulfill the Great Commission of Christ by proclaiming the Gospel of Christ, making disciples and relating to the whole need of mankind, both spiritual and physical C. The Purpose of Our Missions Policy 1. To help us achieve a clear sense of direction 2. To insure proper stewardship of God s finances 3. To develop a loving accountability in our missions program 4. To work in harmony with the leadership of the church Adopted October 1997 Revised February 2003 Revised August 30, 2010 D. Flexibility of Interpretation Exceptions can be made but must be approved by the Elders. E. Revision of Policy Revisions recommended by the missions team must be approved by the Elders II. MISSIONS TEAM: A. Selection of Members Any qualified person with a heart for missions may become a member B. Qualifications of Members 1. Church membership 2. Commitment to missions 3. Healthy spiritual life 4. Willingness to work hard 5. Expected to attend at least 50% of the meetings C. Size of the Missions Team As needed 1

2 III. D. Officers The team elects officers to the following offices each January 1. Team Leader 2. Assistant Team Leader 3. Secretary E. Subcommittees 1. Prayer (See III. B. below) 2. Education (See III. C. below) 3. Missionary Care (See III. E. below) 4. Others as needed F. Term of Office There is no specific term of office. Team members may serve as long as they meet the stated qualifications and have the desire to continue G. Rules The missions team will follow Robert s Rules of Order TEAM RESPONSIBILITIES: A. Team and Member Responsibilities 1. Attend the meetings (usually monthly or as needed) 2. Maintain a regular prayer life, Bible study, and other aspects of Christian spiritual maturity 3. Maintain interest in communication with supported missionaries and request newsletters or updates if they have not been received 4. Stimulate the intercessory prayer of the congregation for our missionaries and for world evangelism 5. Educate and inspire the congregation in the field of world missions 6. Help stimulate involvement and service in missions 7. Care for missionaries on furlough 8. Administer and evaluate the missions program 9. Recommend support levels for new and existing missionaries to the Elders 10. Recommend missionary candidates to Elders B. Development of Prayer Concern 1. Present news and needs in the newsletter or bulletin to the congregation, by means of clippings or correspondence from the missionaries, news briefs from the supporting agency, or news of unreached peoples in the area where the missionaries are working 2. Encourage the congregation to interact with our missionaries through correspondence, letters, cards, and s 2 IV. 3. Pray for our missionaries in Sunday A.M. services 4. Include a monthly prayer calendar in bulletin C. Missions Education in the Church 1. Develop specific programs for each sector of the church a. Elementary Grades b. Middle and Senior High School c. Young Adults d. Adults 2. Identify programs and vehicles that will be developed a. Missions awareness week b. Additional missions emphasis times, or mini-conferences c. Bulletin inserts d. Bulletin board displays e. Maps with locations of our missionaries D. Missions Awareness Week 1. Hold an annual missions conference in the Fall 2. Hold mini-conferences built around specially available speakers 3. Select a conference project E. Care for Visiting Missionaries Provide accommodations for visiting missionaries F. Visitation of Missionaries on the Field Subsidize the sending of appropriate church members to the missions field, as need arises and financial ability permits G. Missionary Recruitment Be sensitive to the direction of the Holy Spirit in the lives of those who have a desire to serve on the mission field and provide encouragement and guidance MISSIONARIES FROM OUTSIDE THE CONGREGATION: A. Responsibilities of the Missionaries to the Church 1. Missionaries are required to correspond with the church in writing or by at least quarterly 2. Missionaries are required to provide an annual report of accomplishments and goals to the church 3. When on furlough, or home assignment, missionaries are required to give a field report during a regular church service 3

3 4. Missionaries are required to report changes of mission field, mission agency, church membership, or doctrinal beliefs to the missions team within sixty (60) days of such change B. Responsibilities of the Church to Missionaries 1. The church or missions team will correspond with missionaries by letter or 2. The church will send its newsletter on a regular basis to missionaries 3. The church s support will be distributed in a regular and timely fashion C. Prerequisites for New Missionary Candidate 1. The missionary candidate must be recommended by someone known and trusted by one or more active members of the missions team 2. The missionary must be in agreement and not be in contradiction with the Articles of Faith of Faith Community Church s Constitution 3. The missionary candidate shall have a clear testimony of salvation 4. The missionary candidate intending to or serving in a foreign field shall be a member of an accepted board, as defined in Section VII 5. The missionary candidate shall be a member of a local church having a doctrinal position similar and not in contradiction to that of Faith Community Church 6. The missionary candidate shall be recommended for service by the Pastor of his/her local church 7. The missionary candidate shall have demonstrated active participation in ministry for at least two years prior to entering the mission field 8. The team will review the application and schedule a subsequent meeting with the applicant(s) to discuss their plans, beliefs, and doctrine 9. If the team would like to consider the missionary for support, a motion will be made to vote on them. If the vote is unopposed, then the team will recommend the applicant(s) to the Elders for approval D. Priorities in Selection of a New Missionary 1. When considering selection of a new missionary, the missions team shall give priority to those missionaries who are Biblicallybased non-denominational 2. The missions team shall give priority to missionaries ministering in foreign countries to unreached people groups V. MISSIONARIES FROM WITHIN THE CONGREGATION: A. Responsibilities of Missionaries to the Church 1. Missionaries are required to correspond with the church in writing or by at least every other month 2. Missionaries are required to provide an annual report of accomplishments and goals for the coming year to the church 3. Missionaries are required, while on furlough or home assignment, to be actively involved in ministry at Faith Community Church, as coordinated with the senior pastor B. Responsibilities of the Church to the Missionary 1. The church or missions team will correspond with missionaries by letter or 2. The church will send its newsletter to missionaries on a regular basis 3. While the missionaries are on furlough in the greater Gambrills area, the missions team will help coordinate the transportation and housing needs for missionaries 4. The church s support will be distributed in a regular and timely fashion C. Process for selecting New Candidates 1. The applicant(s) must have participated in active membership at Faith Community Church for a minimum of 2 years 2. The applicant(s) must submit a completed Faith Community Church application to the missions team indicating their interest in missions work 3. Members of the team will begin to actively pray for the applicant(s) 4. The team will review the application and schedule a subsequent meeting with the applicant(s) to discuss their plans, beliefs, and doctrine 5. The team may send the applicant(s) on a fact-finding trip to visit the mission agency or a field location as deemed appropriate 6. The applicant(s) will report back to the team with their findings. The missions team may require additional information to be obtained by the applicant(s) prior to further action 7. The team will review all of the provided information. If the Faith Community Church application is rejected, the applicant(s) will be notified of the specific reason(s) or problem area(s). If the application is accepted, the applicant(s) will be encouraged to make a formal application to a mission agency 4 5

4 8. The applicant(s), upon acceptance by a mission agency, will provide the missions team with support level information and present their deputation plans 9. If the team would like to consider the missionary for support, a motion will be made to vote on them. If the vote is unopposed, then the team will recommend the applicant(s) to the Elders for approval D. Individual(s) Short Term Missionary Projects 1. Individual short-term missionary projects a. The missions team will help the individual(s) to contact and work with mission agencies b. The missions team will help assist the individual(s) to raise both prayer and financial support needed before going to the field c. The missions team may approve financial support for an individual wishing to participate in a short term missions project. The Elders must approve additional support before money from the general budget will be provided 2. Criteria for Selecting Candidates for Individual Short Term Missionary Projects a. Applicant(s) will appear before the missions team and will outline their short-term or summer missionary plans b. Applicant(s) must show an interest in missions c. Applicant(s) must have evidence of a consistent Christian walk d. Applicant(s) under 18 years of age must have written parental approval e. If the applicant(s) is not accepted, he or she will be notified of the specific reason(s) or problem area(s) f. If the applicant(s) is accepted, the missions team will recommend the applicant to the Elders for final approval g. Applicant(s) must be active members of Faith Community Church, unless under 18 years of age E. Church Sponsored Group or Special Missionary Projects 1. Plans for church sponsored group participation in missionary projects will be presented in advance to the missions team by the group leader/coordinator 2. The missions team may approve financial support for a churchsponsored group missions project. The Elders must approve additional support before money from the general budget is provided 3. Individuals wishing to participate in a church-sponsored group missions project will sign up in accordance with procedures 6 VI. established by the group leader/coordinator and shall fill out required documentation for the trip (ie, travel documents, waivers) 4. Group Leader/Coordinator must meet criteria in D.2 above 5. The Group Leader/Coordinator must request approval from missions team if staff expenses need to be paid from missions budget F. Missionary Insurance & Retirement 1. Insurance for Missionaries The missions team may review mission agencies contributions, as appropriate, to insure that both life and health insurance are properly provided 2. Missionary Retirement Support Guidelines Many mission agencies recommend that churches maintain a percentage (usually 25-50%) of the missionary s support upon retirement from the field. The church has the option to accept an agency s recommendation. The base support upon which a percentage shall be calculated shall be equal to the average of support for the five years preceding retirement. To be eligible for retirement support, the following conditions must be met: a. The missionary has provided documentation to show a need for this support b. FCC has supported the missionary for at least five years c. The missionary agrees to continue his relationship with the church as required in Section IV and V MISSIONS BUDGET: A. Preparation and Approval of Missions Budget 1. The missions team will submit budget recommendations to the Elders for approval once per year by November 2. At least every other year, the missions team will request the missionaries financial budgets from the Mission agencies of all supported missionaries, in order to determine annual support B. Resources for the Financial Support of the Missions Program 1. Funds for the missions program will be drawn from the general budget 2. The missions team may use missions designated funds for missions projects. C. Priorities in the Missions Budget 1. Priorities for missionaries are given in the following priority: first toward those from our own congregation; and secondly toward 7

5 those from non-denominational backgrounds that hold similar doctrinal beliefs. 2. Priorities are also given toward church planting and unreached people groups, as defined in Section VII, over reached people groups and support ministries. 3. The policy of showing budgetary priority to unreached people groups and church planting directly carries over to how Faith Community Church approves funds. 4. Table 1 indicates what maximum percentage of monthly support a candidate may receive from Faith Community Church when petitioning support. 5. Table 1 outlines suggested percentages or dollar amounts, allowing deference to sending churches/agencies. Members of FCC for 2+ years Unreache Reached d People People Group Group 8 Non-Members of FCC or Members < 2 years Unreache Reached d People People Groups Groups Church planting & 50% 30% 15% 5% leadership training Support Ministries 40% 20% 10% $100* Foreign Nationals N/A N/A Based on Individual Need Table 1: Maximum Percentage of Monthly Support * $100 per month is a starting support figure, which may increase over time if necessary D. Beginning of Support 1. Monetary support will begin on a case-by-case basis as determined by the missions team and the needs of the missionary. 2. The congregation will provide their monetary support through Faith Community Church (not directly to the missionary or the mission board). E. End of Support 1. We will support a missionary until retirement unless: a. The missionary changes doctrinal position or changes membership to a church or denomination with beliefs contrary to those of FCC b. The missionary commits an act of immorality or impropriety c. The missions team and the Elders deem that the missionary s service is ineffective d. The missions team and the Elders determine that support is not necessary e. The missionary fails to fulfill responsibilities to the church as stated in Section IV A 2. In the case of a missionary couple, when one spouse passes away, FCC will consider the support of the surviving spouse on a case by case basis F. Criteria for Evaluating Support for Missions Agencies, Organizations or Support Ministries 1. Any agency that we are associated with must be in agreement and not be in contradiction with the Articles of Faith of Faith Community Church s Constitution. 2. Faith Community Church will support only those agencies who can accept candidates from our church members. 3. The missions team shall give priority to those mission agencies, organizations or support ministries which are Biblically-based, non-denominational. 4. The missions team shall review the agency, organization, or support ministry s operating policies. 5. The missions team shall review the agency, organization, or support ministry s financial policies, especially as they relate to receiving funding from secular sources or unbelievers. G. Relationship Between Church and Missions Agencies Faith Community Church requests status reports from the agencies of all the missionaries we support. H. Evaluation and Revision of Support Faith Community Church deals directly with the missionaries and their sponsoring Mission Agencies, both in evaluating their work and their financial needs. I. Allotments for Special Missionary Projects Special gifts raised by the congregation will be used to meet specific needs. J. Expenses of Attending Conferences As funds permit, we may send: 1. Our pastor 2. Our missions team chairman 3. Our members of the missions team 9

6 K. Number of Missionaries and Amount of Support Allowable In order to encourage effective prayer the total number of missionaries supported will be limited VII. DEFINITIONS: A. Active member of the Church means a member who has been a member for at least two years and is involved in at least one church ministry B. Church of similar beliefs means a church whose doctrinal statement agrees with Faith Community Church Statement of Faith and does not contradict it C. Accepted Missions Agency means a Missions agency whose Statement of Faith agrees with Faith Community Church and does not contradict it D. Unreached people means a people group where less than 3% of people profess faith in Jesus Christ, as reported by the most recent edition of Operation World. Examples of unreached people include Muslims, Hindus, Chinese, Buddhists, Secular and Tribal people groups VIII. VARIANCE OF THIS POLICY: The missions team may approve a variance of this policy in situations that the policy does not address 10

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