Missionary Thank You Letters
[Preface: in December 2011, we sent a Letter to Our Missionaries around the world, telling them about the Coffee & Oats season at NHC which allowed us to "catch-up" on our missions commitments. We also sent, along with the letter, their very own package of Harvest Oats. Below are some of the responses that we received via Facebook, email, and letters.]
FACEBOOK: MISSIONARY THANK YOUS
Sue Hegel, missionary to college students (San Diego):
I shared a part of your letter to missionaries with my some of my student leaders, along with some coaches oatmeal cookies and I wanted you to know that we are praying for your church. They are also praying that your friend "Coach" will be blessed by selling a hundred extra bags for every one he donated to missions! I am often amazed my the prayers of my students! Thanks for all you let God do threw you friend!
Wayne and Judy Cagle, South Pacific:
Thanks, Pastor, for the Harvest Oats for missions that you sent! We are great fans of Coach's Oats--we have it almost every day! What a super idea for missions! We send our thanks to you and all the wonderful people of NHC in Brea! We loved the wonderful Christmas cards as well this season! Thanks for your hearts for missions...and missionaries! We are blessed! Wayne & Judy
Lauren Becker, Thailand:
mmmmm great breakfast to start off a great year... thanks to you!
Tom and Lois Lofton, Convoy of Hope International:
Dear Doug, Brenda, and friends at North Hills- thank you so much for your incredible effort to continue your blessing to the world through the message and compassion of Jesus Christ. We greatly appreciate your prayers and support. Hope to share that in person some day. Blessings.
JoAnn Riley, missionary to single moms:
Hi, Pastor Doug! Just wanted to say THANK YOU for the oatmeal and praise the Lord for the generosity of your congregation for their monthly support and creative fundraising idea! Hope you have a great Christmas with your beautiful family!!!
EMAILS: : MISSIONARY THANK YOUS
Happy New Year! I trust all is well with the Greens and North Hills Church.
Thank you for the oat meal! At my age that is a staple. J Seriously, projects like that are a great way to fund your missions support. I really admire and appreciate that you refused to cut back on supporting missionaries. Your faithful support means so much to ENLACE and I.
ENLACE is growing like crazy. We are now working with 52 churches in El Salvador with over 100 on a waiting list. Our churches are seeing great results as they reach out and address the spiritual and physical needs in their communities. Your support is going to help equip them with their mission.
All of the Christmas cards we received from the folks at North Hills were an encouragement. Please express my gratitude to the church for thinking of us.
Happy New Year to you, the staff, and to all the North Hills family.
We received the oatmeal used to raise missions funds in the mail recently. What a powerful, visionary approach you all have created with it. YES! Fits right in with our winter weather breakfasts.
I also want you to know that your church family showered us with so many Christmas greetings, special words of encouragement, scripture promises and reminders that it is overwhelming to Diane and me. The list includes the following people and families:
Bill and Lynn Meehan
Larry and Sharon Dean
Clint and Joyce Steidel
Bradley and Anne Kennedy
Jerry, Caren, Cristen Frost
Jeff and Kathy Campbell Family
PJ and Georgia Smith
Chris, Krista, JT and Amanda Casey
Your family...and perhaps more whose card somehow got misplaced and didn't make it into the stack from North Hills.
What a blessing you are to us.
We thank you from the bottom of our heart for your communication, prayers, and missions support!
Keith and Diane Heermann
Assemblies of God World Missionaries
with Global University since 1993
Tonight I had a Costa Rican missionary family dinner at my home. Someone
brought the box of all our mail and distributed it.
Not only did I get a lot of Christmas cards, I got oatmeal.
First of all, I love oatmeal. I like it with baked apples and walnuts. Right now I have been eating cold cereal because I just ran out of the bag of COACHES OATS that I split with a friend (it was a super big bag from Pricesmart - central american version of Costco).
It was so fun to get some oatmeal from my new favorite oatmeal company.
I read your letter out loud to the group sitting near me and all the missionaries here were touched at the sacrifices that the people of North Hills have made to keep up with your missions commitments.
Thank you so much.
I appreciate you and all that North Hills does on behalf of missions.
I desire to be a good steward of God's blessings, understanding the sacrifices that others make to help me fulfill God's call. That is humbling.
Blessings to all at North Hills
P.S. I will be in So Cal for the Sectional Councils. Hope to see you at a meeting soon.
Mary Kathleen Mahon
CR cell 506/8327-0737
Hope this finds you well, Ky and I are heading out the door in a few minutes to drive over to Bristol, we fly over to Ireland in the very early morning with Tim Southerland – we are going to Shannon to meet Ann Dimond and her family for Larry’s Irish Remembrance Service.
Your little box of oats arrived to day (Thursday Dec. 29) and when I read the enclosed letter I told Ky I wanted to send that letter to every pastor who we know in the AG that supports missions. High five, chest bump, and whatever else is needed to say huge thanks for the spirit in that letter. It was encouraging, inspiring and gave me a huge sense of ‘hey this is why I am in AG missions’.
As you know, we have had a pretty hard year with our mission finances, before Christmas Ky and I called a bunch of churches that had dropped or stopped supporting us over the last 20 months. I don’t think I had any conversations like the tone of your letter. So I was beginning to think of some other options, like: take a job with World Vision, take one of the several offers I have to join faculty somewhere in the USA, apply to the UN, or maybe go back to ‘money laundering’. I read your letter and thought, well if Doug and Brenda can come through like this, lets see what God has in store – stay the course and trust the Lord.
You never know how a letter is going to touch someone – thanks for yours.
We will kiss the Blarney stone for you and bring Ann greetings when we see her tomorrow.
PS – I think the letter should go to Tony Cervero as an inspiration to other AG pastors. Can I send it to him??
Bill Prevette PhD
AGWM Europe // Oxford Centre for Mission Studies
Children and Youth at Risk – Research, Advocacy and Intervention
UK Cell number: +44 0787 011 0269
Oxford Home Number: +44 (0)1865-425-918
Oxford Centre for Mission Studies
St. Philip and St. James Church
Oxford, Oxfordshire OX2 6HR
To learn more about our work: www.prevetteresearch.net
Wanda and I just had to have the special oatmeal as our Christmas morning breakfast – delicious! We savored it as a precious, holy offering, kinda like the water David was given from the well in Bethlehem (except we ate it instead of pouring it on the ground!).
My eyes leaked as I read your accompanying letter - great faith, vision, and prioritizing! I commend your honest leadership.
We received many cards from North Hills people again this Christmas – thanks for partnering with us in prayers and encouragement (and the money is very nice too!).
Ron and Wanda Sommers
“Touching Caribbean Leaders with God’s Heart”
Dr. Ron and Wanda Sommers, Caribbean School of Theology
USA Mail: c/o 1822 W. Primrose St., Springfield, MO 65807
Email: *Ron – firstname.lastname@example.org <mailto:email@example.com>
Jim Knutsen, Europe
Dear Pastor, Missions Committee and members of North Hills Church,
Every once in a while a gift arrives at just the right moment to affirm God’s love and grace towards us and to assure us of His Call on our lives.
I cannot adequately express my deep felt gratitude for your obedience to God in making some hard choices to give to missions, not out of your abundance but out of your need.
I am a missionary leader of 130 missionaries, some of whom have had a very tough year. In 5 days, I am leading a retreat we’ve entitled “Breaking the Barriers of Discouragement by renewing your Call.”
Some of our missionaries go through seasons of feeling isolated even while their passion is for the Lord of the Harvest and their greatest desire is to see the genuine hope of Jesus reaching the most desperate situations.
If Satan can penetrate our brave colleagues amour, it is often with words of discouragement with the strategy of defeating the men and women of God with a sense that they are carrying a burden that no one really understands.
As Patti and I read of your great sacrifice to affirm your missionaries with such a creative congregational-wide campaign, we literally weep. We were….well, stirred, motivated and inspired by your example and encouraged to keep on keeping on!!!
Thank you for the Harvest Oats and the hard choices that you made as a congregation. In 5 days, I am going to read your letter to a group of 130 missionaries, some of who are battle-weary.
Your godly example of sacrificial giving will inspire them as it did, Patti and I.
From some grateful missionaries,
Dale and Patti Coad
Caribbean Area Directors AGWM
C/O Caribbean Ministries Office
10038 Colonial Creek Lane,
Jacksonville, FL 32219
Tuesday night was a good night. Your words were very encouraging!
Sherie and I appreciate so much the sacrifice of the pastors and people of North Hills! You guys are the best!
cheering you on.
Blessings to you,
PAPER MAIL : MISSIONARY THANK YOUS
We are overwhelmed by your letter! We’ve never received one quite like it. Because of the economic downturn, several of our supporters have either reduced their support or cut it entirely—and we understand why this happens. So, to receive your letter! We’ve never received one quite like it. Because of the economic downturn, several of our supporters have either reduced their support or cut it entirely – and we understand why this happens. So, to receive your letter was very humbling and encouraging at the same time. Reading of your congregation’s decision to sacrificially give to missions to maintain missionary support really touched our hearts. The stories you shared of how the families in your church have risen to the need and given sacrificially are inspirational. We already knew that folks there had missions on their hearts. Once again we received many Christmas cards from them with notes that attested to that fact. We really felt showered with love!
The Harvest Oats idea is a great one. We are looking forward to eating ours and will be thinking of North Hills Church when we do. We will be thanking the Lord for such great friends and for His faithfulness in so many ways.
Doug, let us know if there is anything we can do for you and your congregation. We feel blessed beyond words!
Dick and Ruth Foth