The 5 Worst Questions You May Be Asked During a Support Appointment

When starting a Q and A time with a group I always seem to say, “There are no bad questions, only bad answers.” But as it relates to our support appointments, I’m not so sure. I certainly want to give every person I meet with the chance to ask whatever they want to, but occasionally those questions can be quite gut-wrenching! Here’s a sampling of some of the real “doozies” you might be presented with on the support trail with a suggested script that might aid you as you prayerfully think of a good response. Here we go. Buckle up! […]

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Could Floating Underfunded Staff Ultimately Sink Them?

Imagine if Christian organizations, whose staff raise their support, operated their finances as banks do and gave their staff “overdraft protection.” Wikipedia defines overdraft protection as, An overdraft occurs when money is withdrawn from a bank account and the available balance goes below zero. In this situation the account is said to be “overdrawn.” If there is a prior agreement with the account provider for an overdraft, and the amount overdrawn is within the authorized overdraft limit, then interest is normally charged at the agreed rate. Bank customers can arrange overdraft protection for their checking accounts. If they write a […]

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Color Outside the Lines: Successful Support Raising for People of (any) Color

No matter the state of your partnership development efforts, you have my sincere admiration. The level of conviction and active faith it takes to live as a ministering fundraiser is worthy of cheers and thunderous applause. Thank you for honoring God by saying “yes” to His calling and launching into the “great adventure” to make an eternal difference in the lives of many. In this same spirit of reverence and as a person of color (POC) who has successfully developed and maintained a culturally diverse financial and prayer team, I’m writing to offer some tips and reminders about partnership development […]

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The Great Prerequisite for Support Raising Success

Arrogance can keep us ignorant. I should know. I have spent most of my life thinking I knew everything there was to know, and if I didn’t, I could fake my way through. My test preparation strategy in college was to start studying at midnight before the test, then stumble into class with bleary eyes, a caffeine headache and a fried brain. It’s a miracle I even graduated! As a younger man, I thought I had all the answers. Now much older, all I have are questions. Life has a way of making us a little more humble and teachable, […]

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Support Raising from Your Pastor’s Perspective

  Almost a quarter of a century ago, my wife and I were fresh out of college. Our first full-time mission was reaching college students with a parachurch ministry. Our history of support raising up to that point primarily consisted of funding stateside and international summer training projects. However, in this work we needed to trust God to provide us with regular monthly support from individuals and local churches. We lived the highs and lows of this experience for eleven years on two different campuses. It was amazing to see how God provided and how He gave us a team […]

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Warning Flags in Field Staff Funding

As a leader watching over the support health of field laborers what are some warning flags that should grab our attention? We all know a major contributing factor to workers leaving the field is the area of finances and MPD. Once workers have reported to their assignment location, and we’ve supported them through the natural seasons of team and locational culture shock, adjusting to a new work and personal life, etc., we need to be watching for signs to help us determine which staff may need additional coaching with their MPD. Financial stress can be caused by any combination of […]

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Eat Healthier, Read More, Get Fully Funded

The New Year is a time when people tend to look ahead, make goals, start fresh and consider trying new things. We want to lose weight, go to the gym, eat healthier or read more. Sometimes these New Year’s resolutions lead to the change we hope for, yet often our intentions are good, but our follow-through is not. Maybe you also have goals in support raising you hope to reach this year: “This year I will add 5 people each month to my newsletter list. I will add three people to our financial support team this quarter, or I commit […]

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Many Hands Make Light Work

“Many hands make light work.” Dr. Bill Bright, founder of Campus Crusade for Christ (Cru), remembered this teaching from his mother as he was struggling to raise all the funds for the organization in the 1950’s. It was at that point he ushered in a new paradigm of funding his organization. No longer would the annual budget be limited to what one or a few people could raise. No longer was an annual budget the determining factor of how many more campus ministers or missionaries could join their ranks. By empowering all of the staff to mobilize the ministry partners […]

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How to Write an Awful Newsletter

  Not again, I thought. I felt like banging my head against the wall. As Assistant Director of MPD, my job includes skimming staff prayer letters to hunt for good stories. Some staff write exceptionally powerful newsletters. But at that moment, I had stumbled onto the “What Not to Do Newsletter.” The author, “Joe Staff,” wrote with good intentions but had effectively written a newsletter most partners wouldn’t want to read. Here’s where Joe went wrong: Too Long “This is the newsletter that never ends…” sounds like the childhood ditty, “This is the song that never ends.” Some staff write […]

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Your Team Needs a Champion

On every sports team you have key roles. You have the coach who creates and executes the game plan and calls the plays. You have a team captain who does whatever it is that team captains do. You have your key positions like quarterback and pitcher. But I am always most impressed with that guy who is rallying other players at the start of the game, giving pep talks on the sidelines, whose energy raises everyone’s spirits and abilities. If Ministry Partner Development (MPD) is a team sport (which I think it needs to be), I call this person the […]

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Support Raising Solutions
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