Part 5: Thinking about a Missionary Job Description

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Thanks for this background, Theresa. I think we have included some good ideas about background, but I would like us to forge ahead and look at what a reasonable job description might look like and what a performance review might look like. Perhaps you will not want to create an actual job description, but I think we could at least discuss the main parts of a job description. Here goes.

Position description: Missionary

The job description for the full-time evangelistic missionary in (position) with XYZ Mission will include the following dimensions: daily activities; major responsibilities; chain of command; and performance review.

With regards to daily activities, the missionary will be expected to find and maintain an appropriate place to live and care for his or her family members, which is consistent and safe with the surrounding community. The missionary will be expected to engage with the community in various aspects of evangelism and church-planting, to be developed with field and team leadership. He or she will work under the field leader, who will help the missionary to find the appropriate place for his or her gifts and talents in the larger scheme of the mission team.

While there will be an annual performance review that will look at all aspects of the missionary’s life and witness, the nature of the close team relationship means that feedback will also come more frequently. In addition to team and field leadership relationships and relationships with nationals, the missionary will also be expected to maintain regular communications with supporting individuals and churches.

This is admittedly brief, but it presents the opportunity for each missionary to develop a lot of flexibility with their own leadership in terms of meeting the requirements for the goals that the church or mission has.

I'd like to hear your response to this and your corrections, and I want to tell you that I have a surprise. I have asked one of my friends to provide me with a position description from his organization as well as a performance review document. It should be interesting to see how far off you and I could potentially be. On the other hand, I would like to hear what your position description was when you were serving overseas as a missionary. Have fun!


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