Should missionaries sacrifice their children's education?

Should missionaries sacrifice their children's education?

Should a Christian's family be sacrificed on the altar of ministry? 

Very few missionaries would agree with that, even though a calling to missionscertainly requires sacrifice on the part of those who serve. But without good care for missionaries' children, including a suitable education, families can face additional difficulties on the field, or even have to return home.

Mark Lans, a Serving In Mission worker and a father of two missionary kids, says: "The education of missionary children is often one of the greatest factors affecting a missionary’s duration, location, and effectiveness in the field of their calling.”

Here in Loja, Ecuador, the need for teachers in our MK school is critical. Without the necessary teachers, parents will be pulled away from growing, fruitful ministries to fulfill the need of teaching their children.

It’s a tough balance for those who have been called. We are here out of joyful obedience to fulfill the Great Commission, sent and supported by churches and individuals, who all want us to be able to focus on furthering the gospel. However, the missionary community also recognises our responsibilities as parents and would agree that we shouldn't sacrifice our children's welfare and their needs by prioritising ministry before them. 

Henry Brooks Adams, a historian and writer from the early 1800s, said that teachers affect eternity, and no one can tell where their influence stops.

Rebecka King, an SIM missionary and mum of three MKs, said: “That is never truer than in the teachers who have influenced the lives of my children and our ministry.

"On the mission field our options to educate our children are limited. That is why those who have dedicated their lives to teach them have had an eternal influence not only in my children, but also their service has increased the depth of our ministry to those we are able to reach for Christ!”

Missionary support roles, including MK teachers, are often not considered vital in the furthering of the gospel but we would challenge you to reassess this attitude.

MK teachers make it possible for seasoned missionary parents to stay on the field and to continue furthering God's kingdom, rather than needing to return to their home countries to oversee their children’s education. Please consider how you can help keep missionaries on the field by supporting MK teachers.

If you are interested in helping fulfill our teaching need, please contact SIM by emailing have just one part-time teacher to begin the 2018-19 school year for seven-plus levels of students (ages 8-16) in our small MK school. We also have a great need for home-school assistance for our team-mates who live in a rural area and are home-schooling their children.

Please pray

  • For each of our MKs, that each would not only be growing academically, but also in their relationship with Jesus and their knowledge and understanding of the Word.

  • Pray for the Lord to provide teachers for our MK school in Loja for the upcoming school year.

  • Pray that the Lord would provide rural homeschool assistance for our teammates that live outside of the city for this upcoming school year.

Janeen Gutierrez, SIM Ecuador