Support Letters are easy to write if you know what to include. The following are some quick tips on what to put in, what to avoid and how to share your mission trip support letter.
But first, let’s make sure you know why you’re writing a support letter. When you write a support letter, you’re doing way more than just asking for money and prayer – you’re inviting someone to participate in your trip. While they won’t be hopping in the van with you, they will be filling the vital role of providing support in your ministry experience. Keep this in mind as you write and send your support letters.
Think about when to send. A good time frame for many mission trip teams is about 3 or 4 months before your trip. Consider that you don’t want to send it so early people forget about the trip by the time you go, but you also want prayer for your team’s preparation process, not just the actual trip. Also, consider when you need financial support to arrive and plan accordingly.
Intentionally pick your people. Don’t forward your support letter to all your Facebook friends. Instead, take 10 or 20 minutes to think through whom you should send your support letter to. A few groups of people to consider include family, friends (even if they don’t have money to give you), people you know from church, people you know from school, people you want to invite to know you better, etc. Not everyone who gives has to be a believer. This is also an incredible witnessing method to proclaim what God is doing inside the connection of your relationship with them.
Use snail mail. It’s easy to forget the attachment to a Facebook message, but there’s something meaningful about getting a support letter in the mail. When you put it in an envelope you could even include a separate picture asking for prayer during your trip. Who knows – you might wind up on someone’s fridge.
Consider print quality. If you’re printing your letter or picture, make sure you use a printer that doesn’t make your letter look like it’s from the 1980s. Maybe your church or a friend can help, and if not them, invest a little money at a local print shop. It’s worth the extra trouble.
Sending support letters is an important part of your mission trip process. They begin a story that you get to continue telling after the trip! Include others in your story by writing a really great support letter.