& Conducting a Missions Conference
A missions conference is a church meeting which has as its purpose the sharing of missionary testimonies of what God is doing around the world, to encourage the missionaries in their work, and to motivate church members to pray for, communicate with, and financially support missions and missionaries. Sadly, it is my experience that most churches do not get this. Christ said we are His "witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth." (Acts 1:8b NIV) There is no "either/or" in this verse. It seems everyone understands Jerusalem is wherever they are, but then many if not most take the approach that when Jerusalem is covered, then they will seek to extend their influence to Samaria and beyond. Of course this rarely happens since we will never stop reaching Jerusalem. One might even conclude this was Christ's point in the first place and why he did not give us the option of here or there. I probably need to say that I am not suggesting any local congregation could ever touch "the ends of the earth" by themselves. But as we all have this as our target, God will give different ones a burden for different areas so that all will be reached. I just want to make clear that churches that have no vision beyond their own city or even their own four walls, are seriously failing in their call to be a church.
Therefore, I take the approach that we need to do all we can, as fast as we can, to reach all the areas we can. A missions conference where missionaries are invited to share what God is doing and what they hope He will continue to do in and through them, is an excellent vehicle to help build a global view of the work of the church.
A Biblical example of a missions conference is found in Acts 21
When we had come to Jerusalem, the brothers received us gladly. On the following day Paul went in with us to James, and all the elders were present. After greeting them, he related one by one the things that God had done among the Gentiles through his ministry. And when they heard it, they glorified God. (17-20a ESV)
A missions conference can be conducted by a single congregation or a group of church in an area can work jointing, exchanging speakers during the course of the event. In this way, the missionaires have a wider audiance with a lot less travel.