Tips for Planning a Missionary Banquet

Tips for Planning a Missionary Banquet
Usually during a missionary conference a church ends up at least having one large meal or banquet, either at the beginning or at an ending to their missionary conference. Here are a few things to help you get organized for this event.
Plan Ahead. As for any occasion, planning always makes things simpler.
Decide on what type of meal will be served.
Catering – This option usually depends on the size of your budget. Smaller churches rarely take this option but if your church is buying the supplies and food, figure out everything in your supply and grocery list. Sometimes for what you actually end up spending, you could have had it catered and not put all of the manpower (or womanpower) into it. So check into catering, you may be surprised at what you find.
Food of the Countries- Designate different groups of ladies (or adult Sunday School classes) to bring in food from various countries around the world. You should end up with a great variety!
Crock pot City!- If this meal is in the middle of a Missionary Conference, sometimes this is a good time to have all your ladies dig out their crock pots. You can even figure out a menu ahead of time and designate certain foods or have a sign-up list. Make sure your church provides or that you designate folks to bring in salad, bread, and desserts. If everything is make-ahead it eases the load on all involved.
Set up in Advance.
Make sure everything is set up ahead of time and ready to go, especially if your meal is after a church service. You want your ladies to be in the services being fed from the Word not away in the kitchen or fellowship hall. Make sure the church fridge is cleaned out and ready for salads and desserts that need to be kept cold. Have everything laid out. Even make sure the bread is cut up if needed. Nothing should be left to do except setting out things from the fridge.
Make it Special.
Remember this is for your missionaries and that they are special people. Have everything looking nice for them. Finding items to use for decorating should be fairly easy. Check with your local import store or see what your church family can come up with. A great source for free items for Missionary Conferences is to check with embassies of particular countries. Sometimes they will mail you literature, maps, and pamphlets on their country.
Appoint Table Hosts
Make sure that you reserve some table space for your missionaries and their families, but don’t seat them all alone or just among themselves. This should be a time for your church family to get acquainted with them. Appoint a host family for each missionary. Make sure you reserve table space for your host and their
family, along with your missionaries. You may want to check with your pastor to see what church family would be the most appropriate to place with each missionary.
Remember you Serve the Lord by Serving Others