Both articles talked about the concept that support workers are not considered real missionaries by some (or many?) churches and that churches and individuals often don't like to be a part of sending those doing support work.
When Christians stand up and say, "I’m called to missionary care! I’m called to teach MK’s! I’m called to missions administration!" the churches say, "Well, sorry, you don’t fit in our strategy. We’d rather get behind the exciting church planters and the pastoral trainers and the child-trafficking rescuers. Except, we expect them to do it without all the other people they need to be successful."
The following paragraph in that article gives examples of how missionaries on the "front-line" who don't have support workers get bogged down in things like obtaining visas, getting local taxes done, educating their children at home, burnt out because they have no member care assistance available etc.
Support people are vital to the outworking of God’s mission. Let’s continue to work together, each doing whatever He has given us to do, wherever He has called us to do it, so that as we work together He would be glorified!There are many analogies of how support work is vital in many areas of life: for example, in a company a CEO needs his office managers, an athlete needs his coach, an army need their communication specialists and mechanics. Why are missionaries who are in support ministries are considered a "lower class" and less worthy of support?
The current situation in our mission in Japan, with our field director in the process of being called to heaven and his wife (our Personnel Director) obviously not being able to do her job either, is a case in point. Yes, individual missionaries can continue to do their work in their local area, but the leadership, vision, and services that these leaders provide us bind us together and help us to be a greater service in this country than we could each on our own.
The Bible talks about working together and different gifts (see 1 Corinthians 12). But one that particularly comes to mind is from Ecclesiastes:
Support staff are not wasted resources, money given to them is not wasted either (if missions are wise in their planning). Let's help our evangelists and church planters be even more effective by providing all the support staff that they need.