Missionary to Missionary

INTRODUCTION

I would like to make something perfectly clear at the beginning of this book; my objective is to try to be a help to missionaries as I address a number of areas that, for whatever reason, people do not want to OPENLY talk about. Please keep in mind that I am an independent, fundamental Baptist who uses ONLY the King James Bible; I only associate with believers of this persuasion. I am NOT at war with anyone who may disagree with me nor will I lower myself to the level of a supermarket tabloid reporter or a politician. At the same I will NOT pull any punches about what needs to be said in these areas that pertain to missionaries. You may be wondering why I am “clearing the air” right from the start. Well, it seems that in this day and age that we live in; some fundamentalists appear to be so thin-skinned and tend to take things the wrong way. I once knew a pastor who at times tried to be so-o-o-o-o-o tactical and diplomatic in what he said (or failed to say) that after it was all said and done the hearer was left to wonder what he had said. The other extreme is to just say it, be blunt, shoot from the hip, be up front, be painfully specific, etc. At least with the latter the hearer is not left to wonder what was said by the speaker. It is my personal opinion that we should try to use tact, finesse, and diplomacy when communicating while clearly communicating. However, there are times when we need to just tell it like it is; I will tell it like it is while trying to use tact, finesse, and diplomacy in the course of this book. Somehow I suspect this will be a catch-22 as there will still be some who will take offense; others will understand. My prayer is that you at least will close the book having digested the material contained within, in the spirit it was intended from my heart to yours, and be better for it.

The first missionary-related book I wrote, “The Church’s Responsibility to Missionaries” was not taken too kindly by one pastor who wrote with some scathing comments. What this pastor failed to understand was that I was NOT trying to make “…the Pastors out to be the bad guys over and over again” nor did I have “…an axe to grind with Pastors.” It was my intent to address some areas OPENLY with the hope that in doing so some churches would be helped. With this said, and lest any reader, missionary, pastor, layman, student or whoever should misunderstand, I do NOT have an axe to grind with anyone, nor am I trying to make missionaries look bad. As this book is being written, I have been in the ministry for well over 30 years. In 1991 I was commissioned as a missionary printer and continue in this capacity. I have served as the director of a small mission for nine and one-half years and have made many missionary trips. I am a missionary, I work with missionaries, and missionaries are dear to my heart. As a matter of fact, it is my personal opinion that missionaries are choicest among God’s servants. I admit to it, I am partial to missionaries.

So why did I write this book for missionaries? Missionaries are human and, just like any other person, we do things we should not, we make mistakes, we do things that may cause the loss of support, things we did not think about, things we say or fail to say, or worse yet, something another person put us up to saying because they were not man enough to do it. As an individual missionary, I have made many mistakes, some of which I am confident I did not get support because of. Something that we thought was harmless enough was NOT viewed the same way by the host pastor; I know I have been guilty of this. As a missionary associating with other missionaries such as in a mission conference, mannerisms needing correction have been observed. As one who hosted a weekly radio broadcast where missionary letters were read, I read so many with glaring errors; hopefully the pastors receiving those letters were picking up on them. That is of course if a pastor read them at all! As a mission director dealing with missionaries and in talking with other mission directors, I have been the recipient of information; some good and some not so good. As a church member sitting in the pew listening to and observing visiting missionaries, I have seen so many who were letter perfect while others could use some help. So what’s my point here? I am hoping and praying that this book will be used of the Lord as an encouragement to some and a help to others. By sharing some of my own personal experiences, the bad ones in particular, perhaps another missionary will learn from and avoid them. In bringing up some problem areas with other missionaries I am NOT on a witch hunt trying to make anyone look bad; hopefully no one will think so. If only one missionary benefits from this book, well, I reckon it will have been worth the labor of writing it.

It will not surprise me if the book is criticized for a lack of Scripture references. There will be a few Scripture references but please understand this book is not intended for use as a theological commentary; it is a book for missionaries and about missionaries.

For those readers who are not missionaries I would like to encourage you to learn as much as you can about them; read missionary biographies. Missionaries are NOT people who could not make it in another segment of life; they are God’s choicest servants representing the local church in other parts of the world. They have gone or are going to a place you could not or would not go. There is much I would like to say here but will not, instead I encourage you to read the last chapter entitled “The Missionary”; it is a missionary message that the Lord laid on my heart to hopefully to stir the hearts of His people.

I most sincerely pray and desire that all readers of this book are encouraged and helped by it, but most importantly, that the Lord Jesus Christ receives ALL of the honor and glory from it.

Thank you kindly!

Richard A. Ciarrocca, D.D.

 

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Foreword by Dr. Russell Bell

Chapter 1 Introduction

Chapter 2 Personal Discipline

Chapter 3 Your Mission Board

Chapter 4 The Pastor-Missionary Relationship

Chapter 5 Scheduling Meetings

Chapter 6 Arriving Or While At A Church

Chapter 7 Dining At The Church Or With A Church Family

Chapter 8 Missionary Support

Chapter 9 Personal Hygiene

Chapter 10 Personal Financial Indebtedness

Chapter 11 Financial Accountability

Chapter 12 The Missionary And Taxes

Chapter 13 Thoughts On Soul Winning

Chapter 14 The Missionary Tithe

Chapter 15 Once On The Field

Chapter 16 Entertaining Visitors From Home

Chapter 19 Missionary Prayer Letters

Chapter 20 Resigning From A Board

Chapter 21 Medical Insurance

Chapter 22 Jack Of All Trades

Chapter 23 Beggars, Whiners, And Making The Needs Known

Chapter 24 Dealing With Discouragement

Chapter 25 Advice From A Missionary Wife

Chapter 26 Miscellaneous

Chapter 27 Missionary Quotations

Chapter 28 Gold Mining

Chapter 29 How To Pray For Missionaries

Chapter 30 The Missionary

Chapter 31 Something To Chew On

Chapter 32 World Missions: Home Vs. Foreign

Chapter 17 Furlough And Support

Chapter 18 Acknowledging Support And/or Gifts

This book is available for a contribution of $9.95 plus shipping.

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Poems From The Heart

poems from the heart

The book, Poems From The Heart has now been uploaded to Amazon.com for the Kindle. Short link: http://amzn.to/poemsfromheart

From the Introduction: “The poems in this book are a collection of thoughts and events from life. Many of the poems, I will not say which ones though a few will be obvious, are based on personal life  experiences. Other poems are based on a thought that may have come from a song, something read during personal devotions, a sermon, or perhaps something another person said. Some of these poems are written with a serious and somber note and others are on the light side but they all have one thing in  common: they are poems that preach and have a point to make.”

“It is my sincere prayer that all who read this book will  enjoy it, be encouraged, challenged, and if they have not  already done so, that they will dedicate themselves to living for the Lord and serve Him however He sees fit.”

 

“Only one life, ’twill soon be past,

Only what’s done for Christ will last.                                                                       

And when I am dying, how happy I’ll be,

If the lamp of my life has been burned out for Thee.”

-C.T. Studd
This book is available for a gift of $7.95 plus postage.

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Tips For Tracts

This 124-page book is packed with some very practical suggestions on how to use Gospel tracts. It also has a chapter of Great Gospel Tract Testimonies as well as the testimony about “George Street” and how one man, through the use of Gospel tracts, was used of the Lord to influence the lives of hundreds of people.

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This book is available for a contribution of $5.95 each plus postage.

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The Church And Missionary Relationship

church and missionary

Kindle edition is available right now.

From the “Introduction” of the book: There are two ways to look at world missions and missionaries, one of which is from the “outside looking in” and the other is “from the inside looking out”. As you read this book on The Church and Missionary Relationship, please do not interpret it as an attack on a person or a church, for that is certainly not the intent. The purpose of this book is

  • to look at world missions and missionaries from the inside and through the eyes of missionaries,
  • and hopefully to somehow be able to help the local church understand what its real responsibility is with respect to missionaries,
  • and to call attention to some of the things that a missionary has to contend with.

When a missionary comes to a church while on deputation to present his ministry, report to a supporting church, or perhaps he is just writing a newsletter to give a report about the ministry that he is already engaged in, there is so much that he could and probably would like to say, but does not have the liberty to do so. But if Brother Missionary was brave enough or had the liberty to bare his heart and tell the congregation what he has to contend with, in all likelihood it would be perceived as sour grapes. He may also be signing his financial support death warrant. The truth of the matter is that there is a lot that goes on in the life of a missionary, whether he’s on the field or on deputation that people never hear about, and this writer is not really sure that they want to. On the whole, pastors and congregations only want to hear the positive reports – they do not want to hear the negative side that really does exist.

In the preparation of this material the author feels in a very awkward position; he himself is a missionary. Because of what he has seen, heard, and learned over the years, he feels compelled that somebody at some point in time must address certain issues on behalf of other missionaries. A missionary now serving in Latin America wrote and said, “Thanks for taking these matters to the stump for us.” I am quite sure that there is much more that could be addressed than what is already contained herein, but this should be sufficient for the present. With this thought in mind, we need to first of all dispel the myth of home and foreign missions.

This book is available for a gift of $6.95 plus postage.

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Missionary To Missionary On Kindle

Missionary to Missionary is a book I wrote and is directed specifically to veteran missionaries or those just starting out in mission work. The printed version is available from PFBP. Another version for the Amazon Kindle is also available from Amazon.com.

Some of the chapter titles are:

  • Personal Discipline
  • Your Mission Board
  • The Pastor-Missionary Relationship
  • Scheduling meetings
  • Missionary Support
  • Financial Accountability
  • The Missionary and Taxes
  • Personal Financial Indebtedness
  • and much more.

This is an excellent book for those just starting out in missionary service; it is also suitable for veteran missionaries.