15 Ways to bless a missionary this Christmas

15 Ways to bless a missionary this Christmas


It’s almost Christmas and you want to do something fun for your favourite missionary or overseas worker… How incredibly thoughtful of you! Whether it’s a care package you’d like to send or you need an online gift-giving option, we’ve got some suggestions to get your creative juices flowing.


15 Christmas gift ideas for missionaries


The ‘skip the post office’ options:


1. Choose an experience. Google activities where your missionary lives and buy him/her an online gift certificate for an outing to the zoo, a day at the pool, a sightseeing sail, or something similar. This type of thing will vary widely by location (as you can tell by our summer suggestions!), but look for something fun that your missionary might not typically have the budget for.


2. ITunes gift card. Buy an iTunes gift certificate online or if you buy an actual card, just email them the number from the back. If you want to personalize it even more, buy them the next season of their favourite show or an upcoming album that’s soon to be released. How fun for them to be among the first to download a newly released entertainment item!


3. Kindle gift card. For the book lovers on your missionary list, this is a no-brainer! Even those who don’t have a kindle can read a book through the kindle app on their phone or computer.


4. Skype credit. Send them Skype credit so they can go crazy with all those calls to grandma over the holidays!


5. Prayer & scripture. Pray for your missionary and ask God to give you a meaningful scripture. Spend the time to write the scripture out, paraphrase your prayer, and send it in a nice email. They will be delighted you took the time!


6. Movie tickets. Look up their local cinema and buy them a gift certificate online. If you’re able, include enough for two tickets and $10-20 extra for popcorn and drinks. What a fun holiday treat!


7. Blow money. I know this sounds boring but what missionary wouldn’t enjoy some guilt-free spending money?! Send them a little extra to buy themselves something from their wish list or go out for a nice meal.


8. Christmas bonus. Even better, give your missionary an actual Christmas bonus they can use however they need to. We all know how many extra expenses come up at Christmas, and missionaries tend to have pretty tight budgets to work with in the first place. A Christmas bonus might allow them to buy their friends, spouse, and children the gifts their budget might otherwise not afford them, host a neighbourhood Christmas party, put on a lovely holiday spread for their family, or pay the postage on all those Christmas cards they need to send out to family, friends, and supporters.


The ‘send a care package’ options:


9. Home country candy. Fill a little box with red and green holiday M&Ms and other Christmas treats they may not find in their place of service.


10. Scented candle. Depending on where your missionary serves, they may not get to enjoy the smells associated with their childhood Christmases. Consider sending them a candle scented with pine, cinnamon, peppermint, or another scent that reminds them of home.


11. Hot cider or hot chocolate packets. You might be surprised by the things your missionary misses. Even something as simple as hot cider packets can be a little taste of home for them over the holidays.


12. Pinecones or tree sprigs. Send a small box of pinecones or sprigs to decorate the table with and add some familiar scents from home. (Check with the customs website of your missionary’s country to make sure these will be accepted.)


13. Something silly. One year my mom sent us a small bucket filled with soft, fluffy plush snowballs. It was a hilarious and weird gift but has turned into a beloved tradition to have our living room snowball fights in the middle of our summer Christmas Down Under.


14. Holiday décor. For those serving in places where Christmas isn’t widely celebrated, consider sending a few small decorative items, a snow globe, small wreath, or Christmas printed napkins or hand towels.


15. Something for the team. If your missionary is serving with a partner or a team, consider including something the others on the team can enjoy along with them—a favourite Christmas movie on DVD (check the DVD region or send it via iTunes!), a box of chocolates to share, etc.


Are you a missionary or overseas worker reading this post? Tell us in the comments what would most bless you this Christmas!


Image credit: Padurariu Alexandru
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Adriel Booker

Adriel Booker is a writer, speaker, and mentor with a passion to help people connect with Jesus, find their place in the world, and usher in the Kingdom. Adriel and her husband co-lead YWAM Sydney Newtown and—together with their three children—they enjoy cultivating community in their beautiful city by the sea. She also leads the Love A Mama Collective, serving women in the developing world through maternal health initiatives. Adriel's latest book is Grace Like Scarlett and she can be found writing regularly at www.adrielbooker.com.
Adriel Booker
  • Thanks for this, it is great. I will share on with others.

    28th Nov 2015 at 12:13 pm
  • Cristina Jaramillo

    My husband and I we are missionaries since 2004 in ywam, we have 2 children, they serve with us and they travel with us.
    A great gift for us would be to receive and awesome opportunity to go to a very special and fun place with our kids or simply and offering to buy the gifts they are praying for.

    28th Nov 2015 at 1:05 pm
    • Jompa

      Hi! whats your bank account number?

      28th Nov 2015 at 10:31 pm
  • I get to go home this Christmas!!! But last year Skype calls for Christmas would have been great. I was alone for ten days on base. Everyone had gone somewhere else. So Skype calls or blow money to get off base. And it’s so funny when any package comes and it has things the sender enjoys. Like I’m not big on hot apple cider packet things but anytime someone has sent them it’s been super cozy and reminds me of friendships.

    28th Nov 2015 at 5:26 pm
  • A. T.

    Love the list! I’d like to get some shoes or a sweater.

    28th Nov 2015 at 5:55 pm
  • Kindsi Lora

    Depending on where they live and what their internet capabilities are, there are also some fun online-class opprotunities you could gift!! I’m currently working in Japan and I love blogging so I’m looking to take some online photography classes to improve my content! I’m also looking into some skype-based language lessons – so if your missionary is still trying to master the language where they are that could be a helpful tool and a great gift idea!

    28th Nov 2015 at 11:34 pm
  • Bernie Kay

    Adriel, Thank you for these suggestions. I’m going to repost this on my facebook page. My wife and I serve with YWAM in Hawaii. Often people think that because we are in hawaii we don’t need support. This is so not true. You have some really good suggestions. One of the things I would love for Christmas is the extra money to be able to buy my wife a piece of jewelry. I know it would make her Christmas. It would certainly make my Christmas.

    29th Nov 2015 at 2:07 pm
  • Here are a few more ideas:
    * For those who have internet – a Netflix subscription, an Audible subscription or some Christian audiobook subscription
    * Subscription to their favorite magazine and have it mailed overseas to them.
    * An Amex or other prepaid card for the fun money.
    * A coffee mug (Starbucks or otherwise) with a picture from their hometown.
    * Typical holiday food items that aren’t available like canned pumpkin, mincemeat, etc.

    30th Nov 2015 at 6:45 am
  • Excelente idéias, parabéns… Vamos divulgar…

    30th Nov 2015 at 9:04 pm
  • Franchesca Woodman

    Sweet! Thanks for writing! My husband, baby boy and I are missionaries with YWAM. We will miss the big celebrations we used to have in our previous base! Now we are in HK and would surely love to be able to enjoy in a family getaway, or being able to eat nice Christmas dinner in a nice place!

    1st Dec 2015 at 1:43 am
  • Thanks so much for sharing this! These are super helpful to pass along to friends and family in this missions season and as I continue to try to fundraise for upcoming international missions.

    1st Dec 2015 at 4:57 am
  • One thing to check into first – does your missionary have to pay to receive packages in their country? It could be a bit discouraging to have to pay for a package and find that is only had pine cones in it! Other than that, the rest of these suggestions are fantastic!

    6th Dec 2019 at 9:23 am
  • I love this so much… through the years I have received a few of those things on the list and it has blessed me so much. I will definitely be forwarding this to my friends even if I am home for the Christmas 🎄 thank you for this post ♥️

    13th Dec 2019 at 1:45 am
  • This is a great list! I think the best gift is an unexpected financial gift that might allow the missionary to bless their kids with something they can’t afford otherwise or, even better, towards a family vacation that they couldn’t afford otherwise. If someone owns a timeshare, maybe gift a week there for the missionary family. Or gift frequent flier miles that they can use towards a trip. Or use some points you have accrued towards hotels, cruises, etc. As a missionary…the gift of a vacation for my family would be AMAZING!

    21st Dec 2019 at 11:16 am

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