Women Missionaries

Women Missionaries: A Gift to the Hurting

The United Nations lists women and girls as one of the most vulnerable people groups in the world.[1] That’s half the population of the planet. Deep social and cultural prejudices and practices impact this people group. This is why women missionaries are so greatly needed in the world today.

“These are often among the most vulnerable members of society, and are at greater risk of economic hardship, exclusion and violence; discrimination against them is often compounded,” the UN reports.[2]

Across the globe, 380 million women and girls live in extreme poverty of $1.90 per day income or less.[3] Additionally, one in three women in 2021 lived with moderate to severe food insecurity.[4] Of all human trafficking, 72 percent of them are women and girls.[5]

These staggering and heartbreaking statistics bring to light the hurts and fears that millions of women face every single day. Women missionaries can lovingly walk into these places as friendly faces of God, understanding the fragility many women and girls live with.

The total number of active missionaries is a difficult number to pin down, largely due to transience and how a missionary is defined. The International Bulletin of Mission Research estimates that 430,000 missionaries went out into the world from every Christian tradition in 2021.[6] Historically, there have been more women in missions than men, between married couples and single women.

Women are uniquely suited to go to places unreachable by men and to minister to hurts that men may not fully understand. So, with the largest group of vulnerable people being women, it makes sense to prioritize women missionaries being sent into those places and to those people.

Christian missionaries in South Asia, for example, have benefitted from the deep legacy left by women like Mother Teresa and Amy Carmichael, two women called to lifelong service in the country they served. Their Christian missionary work provided examples to future missionaries that still reverberate today.

Widows in South Asia can find themselves in some of the worst conditions possible. They work as long as they can, but age, hard labor and injury can debilitate them quickly, leaving them to rely on family members who may or may not be willing or able to help.

Adey is one such woman, who at 60 was still working in the fields until a bad fall rendered her unable to stand. She was injured and alone until a daughter could come and care for her.[7]

Soon she and other widows in the area were visited by GFA World Sisters of Compassion and Women’s Fellowship members. They saw the condition of women like Adey and were deeply moved by their plight. Adey’s fall left her with severe pain in her legs and hands. The Sisters used oils to gently massage her limbs to relieve some of the pain and show the care of Jesus Christ to her.

“I thank God for the Sisters of Compassion team and your ministry,” Adey said. “No one has ever come to know my well-being, but these sisters came and cut my hair, gave me a bath, and massaged my hands and legs. I am truly thankful to them.”

This kind of tender physical care is best given by female missionaries like the Sisters of Compassion or the Women’s Fellowship members. It is the kind of service that shows the gentle mercies of Jesus Christ through His female disciples.

The women’s ministry team are also thankful when they get to serve in these special ways.

“I thank God for this privilege that I could do something for the needy people,” Sani, one of the workers, said. “When I see these old mothers and fathers whose children have left them alone to struggle, my heart breaks.”

Supporting a missionary charity like GFA World makes it possible for these beautiful women to go to those who need them most. GFA trains national missionaries to serve in the country they are from because they are uniquely qualified both culturally and socially to understand those they serve and be able to understand the situations they will encounter.

Before knowing Jesus, these women experienced the same shame, fear, abuse, rejection and heartache their neighboring women live with. Because these missionaries are women and live in a culture where it’s difficult to freely interact with men, they—unlike their male counterparts—can approach women in their homes and freely share about Jesus’ love with no fear of misinterpretations.

Sponsoring one woman through GFA to be a missionary makes it possible for:

  • gender barriers to be overcome so women in Asia can hear about new life in Christ.
  • women in all walks of life to be served, whether widows, mothers or young adults.
  • women to be ministered to in communities such as villages, slums and leprosy colonies that have never had the chance to hear about hope found in Jesus.

Make today the day you change not only the missionary’s life but the lives of those she will touch. Sponsor her for just $30 a month and help her be the hands and feet of Jesus to those least cared for.

Learn more about how to sponsor a girl education

[1] “Women: Empower Not Suppress. United Nations.” https://www.un.org/en/fight-racism/vulnerable-groups/women. Accessed October 10, 2022.
[2] Ibid.
[3] “Progress on the Sustainable Development Goals.” United Nations. https://www.unwomen.org/en/digital-library/publications/2022/09/progress-on-the-sustainable-development-goals-the-gender-snapshot-2022?gclid=Cj0KCQjwhY-aBhCUARIsALNIC07-kIIIsy8anZeBAM9XFiyaFgbR7CULEW6HvrDIO1rVbrmIXNTqNbAaAnRvEALw_wcB. September 2022.
[4] Ibid.
[5] “Human Trafficking and its impact on women, girls, and children” ECPAT. https://ecpat.org/story/international-women-and-girls-series-5-how-does-trafficking-affect-women-girls-and-children/. Accessed October 10, 2022.
[6] Gina A. Zurlo, Todd M. Johnson, and Peter F. Crossing. “World Christianity and Mission 2021: Questions about the Future, International Bulletin of Mission Research, Volume 45, Issue 1.” https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/epub/10.1177 /2396939320966220. January 2021.
[7] GFA World. Facebook. https://www.facebook.com/photo/?fbid=476770381157206&set=a.355741243260121. September 17, 2022.