Mission Yearbook Transitions to New Digital-Only Format

Change makes Mission Yearbook available to everyone at no cost

August 6, 2015


The 120-year old Presbyterian Mission Yearbook for Prayer & Study will become an online-only free digital resource starting in 2016. This move broadens the reach of the book’s audience by sharing its inspiring content in a timelier manner and also demonstrates good stewardship of church resources.

The Mission Yearbook dates back to 1892 as a simple calendar of prayer to help women’s societies pray for missionaries on designated days. It has the longest history of any denominational mission and prayer book in the United States.

The publication’s esteemed history will be reflected in the online version of the Mission Yearbook by connecting Presbyterians to the greater church and energizing them for mission.

Over the past decade, as readership of the printed Mission Yearbook declined, the cost per book increased dramatically, making it less accessible to many.

“We are saddened to discontinue the historical print publication, which has been the center of daily devotional life for many Presbyterians,” said senior director of Communications, Kathy Francis. “With the vast majority of people accessing information online, it was a natural and financially responsible choice to transition the book to an online-only resource.”

The transition to digital will make the Mission Yearbook available to everyone at no cost. In addition, a new, user-friendly Presbyterian Mission Agency website is being developed that will enable the Mission Yearbook to be more easily accessed.

Mid councils will no longer be asked to provide content for the Mission Yearbook. Instead, Presbyterian News Service reporters will call to interview mid council leaders and write stories reflecting mission. The shorter turnaround time for digital stories will result in fresher content. Additionally, the online format will allow some mission stories to be told using video.

“We’re encouraged that by continuing the beautiful tradition of this book in an online format, we will be able to bring stories of mission to life in a new way,” said Francis. “We appreciate the ongoing support of the Mission Yearbook and the prayerful financial support of the Presbyterian Mission Agency.

  1. Dear MYB Readers and Staff: I am very sympathetic to those who have been disheartened for a time with the transition from the hard copy Mission Yearbook to the online version. However, the online version seems to me to be improving steadily and is still excellent. Reading through all the comments just now, following several months of using the online version myself, I am feeling more and more confident that most, if not all, the positive suggestions can and will be implemented and the negatives mitigated. I feel very confident that the good uses to which the MYB has always been put will continue, as those constructive suggestions are in fact implemented. We have, at our church, continued to use the MYB articles as missional studies in our "Centering Prayer" worship services, and our Sunday bulletins and weekly "Grapevine" newsletters continue to feature the Minute for Mission articles and other contents. To the Staff -- Please keep up the good work, and try your best to keep improving the new online format to be every bit as good as and even better than the previous hard copy. To the Readers -- Let's continue to have patience and pray for the staff, and let's do everything we can to play a part in continuing this excellent resource, especially with thoughtful suggestions for improvement and support for our brothers and sisters who are temporarily struggling with the online version.

    by Karl Morthole, Lakeside Pres Church, San Francisco

    April 13, 2016

  2. I have only recently discovered the on-line version of the Yearbook and am grateful to be reconnected. Of course, I miss many of the former features. I have shared the e-address with members of my church. The news of the transition had not been shared with the congregation.

    by Ruth Hazelton

    March 29, 2016

  3. 'Tis sad to see the printed copy go. Oh what an expense. What else could we do? I want something SHORTER! This way I get to only some, all too few, of them read. Also I would like to see them more READER FRIENDLY. Newspaper have good reason for narrow columns -- more gets read. And people like me with dyslexia have trouble with long lines. It is so easy to make columns now! But thank you for putting something together. May it develop into something many more will read.

    by J Elliot P. Morrison

    March 19, 2016

  4. In this day of Print-on-demand, can we just order a hardcopy? I'd pay a premium to not have to use the on-line version. It doesn't work well with my devotional practices.

    by Kent Smith

    March 13, 2016

  5. I am so sorry that you had to discontinue the printed copies of The Yearbook of Prayer. I signed onto this website to purchase a printed copy for my mother who is 95 years old and is still recycling her last copy. She still attends worship and a Womens Bible Study group but finds it impossible to go online anymore. She is a retired lay missionary with the Presbyterian church and has faithfully followed the Yearbook of Prayer since before I was born. Please reconsider resuming a print edition for her and others who are no longer (or never were) able to go online.

    by Carol Worth Baca

    March 6, 2016

  6. Wondering when the next 3 months will become available to print off?

    by Nancy

    March 4, 2016

  7. Gee, I thought Palm Sunday would be March 20th in 2016, not February 28th. Seems someone got a little mixed up.

    by An inquisitive soul

    February 28, 2016

  8. I miss the hymn selections with the scripture passages. I am grateful for this write up today and for the good justice advocacy work Presbyterians of all ages are doing in DC! Wondering if this message was intended for Palm Sunday instead of today's lectionary readings.

    by Mary Graves

    February 28, 2016

  9. Are there no responses from the Mission Yearbook people. What can you tell us about the issues raised here?

    by Me

    February 25, 2016

  10. I appreciate the new format, but I remember traveling and visiting missionaries in the field and having them sign on their page! Can't do it now. But times are changing as Dillon told us many moons ago

    by Bud Frimoth

    February 22, 2016

  11. My practice for around the last 30 years was to use this every morning as part of my devotional and prayer time. Last year at least I could get it on FB upon waking up. I signed up for emails this year, which normally come late afternoon. I signed up for RSS, which sometimes arrive the night before and sometimes late afternoon of the day's reading. I am on Pacific time, 3 hours behind you, so when you send an email at 3:00 pm my time, it is already 6:00 pm yours! The stories rarely tell of mission work being done now. Today's was a sweet stories, but it was a story that occurred 2 generations ago and was of missionaries helping other missionaries. Most of today's stories are about reorganization at various levels and leadership development, not about what the church is actually doing to care for the least of these. I am disappointed in the delivery and content and am about ready to give this up.

    by Kate Belt

    February 20, 2016

  12. The article of February 15, 2016 has very little to do with Pittsburgh Presbytery. The leaders of the meeting were from Pgh Theological Seminary, but that's about it. I learned nothing about Pittsburgh Presbytery. This article might better have had the heading, "Minute for Mission". I also agree with others who say the closing prayers seldom relate directly to the article for the day. I understand the need to go digital, BUT could you please make the entries (content and prayers) relate to the area and to each other. You're losing a lot of credibility with this new format

    by Peggy

    February 15, 2016

  13. I am enjoying using the on-line version. It is coordinated with the daily Liturgy which makes my devotion time more effective .

    by Jo Nelson

    February 12, 2016

  14. I am fine with digital format and keep my laptop at the table where my husband and I use the yearbook for our daily devotions. On the "wish" side, I wish we still had a list of mission coworkers and partners/presbytery partners in each country; the demographic info on each country; and the mission write-ups from the different presbyteries. While the feature articles from PCUSA writers are well done, I value the write-ups from the presbyteries because at least once a year, each presbytery had to think through its mission efforts and recognize at least one for publications. I recognize that organizing the work of a lot of different writers takes more staff time (and therefore funding) than organizing the work of a half dozen writers, but what about recruiting a cadre of us readers (including me) to organize and proofread the presbytery submissions? In the meantime, thanks for what you do--and for letting your reader audience speak up. Peace to you all.

    by Elizabeth Branch

    February 11, 2016

  15. Most comments above express my thoughts. Allow me to emphasize a few: 1) Many of the narratives are too long. 2) I miss groupings by synod and world geography. 3) Prayers do need to correlate with the mission narrative. I do commiserate with you and other readers that economically that this change was necessary.

    by Mary Lathem

    February 6, 2016

  16. Although I'm fairly good with my computer and online at 88, I miss having the printed copy, so like others, I still have the previous year's copy and will use it. When I've traveled I took the book with me and if we were in a place where the missionaries were located, I had them sign it... electronically, that's not possible now.

    by bud Frimoth

    February 5, 2016

  17. Having the Yearbook on line makes it very hard for those of us who have faithfully paid our share for the printed copy. I use the Yearbook for daily devotions, checking on the demographics, the maps, and material in the indices. I can't do these things on my computer--some of us aren't too literate with these procedures. Where do I have to go for these resources? Thanks, Ruth Morgan ruthmorgan1541 @comcast.net

    by Ruth Morgan

    February 3, 2016

  18. I have a concern for older people that always used the printed copy for years. Now they have been cut off since most do not have computers. Now is it the local church responsibility to provide this important information to the elderly that have been strong supporters of denomination.

    by George Sanneman

    January 31, 2016

  19. We use the mission yearbook as a devotional guide each morning. We've noticed that the prayers seem disconnected from the content of the articles. For example, today's prayer about camps and conferences had nothing to do with the story of the first call pastors. It seems as if the prayers are just shuffled around and tacked on. Surely you can do better, or do you need help?

    by Jeff Kellam

    January 29, 2016

  20. I along with MANY others are saddened by this decision. I understand the economics of this decision, but I don't understand how the $ factor outweighs the need of many to have these in print. A majority of our members are older, and many do not have access or simply do not use a computer. From the comments I have read it looks like many people needed and depended on these books. I guess we will just have to find a way to make this work. Thank you for letting me voice my opinion. God will guide us through.

    by Kristy

    January 28, 2016

  21. Once again the Presbyterian Church has shown its out of touch with membership. Our church kept copies in the pews for members to read. Then it got expensive and they were available in the office. What are you doing with all our donations that you can't afford to print the Yearbook anymore! We are happy to pay for hard copies. Instead you put all your money into liberal politics. The church is dying out before our eyes.

    by Sara T.

    January 27, 2016

  22. I use the Mission Yearbook to share congregations and prayers with our church members. I like to flip through the book to find prayers and ministers to pray for in my prayer group. The new format is useless and I wil l no longer be able to use it. From now on, our prayers will come from the Bible, which is the Word of God.

    by Disappointed

    January 27, 2016

  23. I wish to express my distress that the Mission Yearbook is no longer printed. If the rest of the church is like my own, the declining membership can be explained as only older members reading it. Most of the people in my church don't know it exists. You have your work cut out for you. I understand the irony that I am writing you on an iPad, but this does not stay with my devotional materials like the book did. In Christ -

    by Mary Lou McCaa

    January 22, 2016

  24. Is there any way to print an entire month at a time? Now I must print each day separately which takes time and certainly does not make to including the Yearbook in our personal devotions. We do not do digital devotions. As a result we are just using the 2015 print edition a second time.

    by Daniel J. Adams

    January 20, 2016

  25. Kathy, I would like to receive the daily devotional of the 2016 Mission Yearbook for Prayer and Study. My email address is given above. Thanks so much, Nancy Warlick 1221 Falcon Dr. Orlando, FL 32803 407-894-6946

    by Nancy Warlick

    January 20, 2016

  26. I miss the printed edition but am adjusting to getting the digital on my iPad. I do miss the maps in the printed addition. I hope there is a way to conveniently locate them in the digital.

    by John McCall

    January 19, 2016

  27. I echo many of the comments already posted. I use tis as a part of my daily devotions and it is disruptive to have to interrupt my devotions to go turn on my computer and go print out the daily reading. I take seriously praying for the larger church and miss the print format by synod, presbytery and nation. Also, I pastor a small rural congregation and by going to print only you have shut down one important avenue of daily prayer. Most of my people do not participate in the digital world this way and so the voices of those who normally use the print format as a part their daily devotions are now marginalized or silenced. Maybe you could explore a less costly print format.

    by Rev Bill Norton

    January 15, 2016

  28. I understand and applaud the upgrade to the digital age. Items are not out of date by the time they're read (and it saves money to boot). However, the digital edition seems to skip all over. Any thought for next year to organize along the previous format, with synod maps and individual presbyteries following? And can the "world-wide" mission be by area of the world. Without the regional geographic format it comes across very disorganized without the ability to see an area as a whole. I read daily but this new format in its less specific layout doesn't let me understand and concentrate on any one part of the country or the world as I read sequentially.

    by Peggy Billian

    January 14, 2016

  29. Three questions: 1. Are judicatories no longer featured? The locations do not see to follow any pattern. 2. Why are some stories so long? Reading them on my phone is difficult. 3. Why do some days have no stories? Thank you for your hard work. I will try to keep following the MYPS.

    by Jane

    January 13, 2016

  30. Please bring back the print copy. I use the Mission Yearbook as part of my daily devotions and I don't want to use that time in front of a screen. I am now copying it, but I'm not able to read all the other information that was in the Yearbook. It's a treasure, and should be in "hard copy" as well as on a screen.

    by Reva Dietrich

    January 11, 2016

  31. We are saddened that the Minute for Mission is unavailable in print. The Minute for Mission has been read every Sunday in both of the churches that I've served (12 years). It helps smaller churches to feel a part of a whole. We felt the something other than seminaries could be featured.

    by Rev. Cindy Privette

    January 9, 2016

  32. It took me until Dec 31 to wake up to the new day of no print version of the MYB and until now to realize you were a step head of me by planning an online version. I will diligently try to adjust to this new reality and pray that you will be able to work out a gracious way for those without internet and computers to access what has been such a lifeline into the wider Presbyterian Church for so many of us for so long. Blessings and Peace, Jsn

    by Jan Niemeyer

    January 8, 2016

  33. Is it just me, or do the prayers not seem to relate to the content?

    by Lori Ruff-Schmalenberger

    January 8, 2016

  34. A good move. And I like the reminder posted on the daily news release page.

    by Philip Weiler

    January 8, 2016

  35. Assume this is also a major cost cutting effort. I generally do not rely on daily on line content, so I will miss the daily connection with Presbyterian mission efforts.

    by Don of Jacksonville, FL

    January 7, 2016

  36. The new format is awkward. And I wonder if you will include the different countries and maps in the future.

    by Betts Huntley

    January 7, 2016

  37. miss the hymn suggestions of the mission year book, was a great resource...

    by Achim Daffin

    January 5, 2016

  38. My husband and I have read the Mission Yearbook together at the breakfast table for years. We are slowly adjusting to your changes. Yesterday (Sunday) we were totally unable to get it as the website was "unavailable." That started the day all wrong and we never had that problem with the book. The longer narratives, while interesting, seem almost too long. Perhaps you might include some of that information via links for those interested. We sorely miss the geographic underpinnings which always have helped us see the bigger picture. Sure, we know where Milwaukee is, but will we recognize Great Rivers or Livingstonia?

    by Sheila Nollen

    January 4, 2016

  39. Editor's Note: Please remember the Mission Yearbook is available at http://www.presbyterianmission.org/yearbook/. It is no longer being published in its annual entirety, but released a month or two at a time.


    PC(USA) Staff

    January 4, 2016

  40. I have been unable to access the 2016 Yearbook for Prayer and Study. I use the Minute for Mission every week in my church bulletin. I am sorry to see the paper copy eliminated.

    by Paulette Pasley

    January 4, 2016

  41. I miss the paper version. I couldn't even access this on January 1 or on some of the last days of 2015. The "How to Use the Mission Yearbook page" is still for 2015. I always like to look up the missionaries I know & the presbyteries in which I've lived when I first get the book. It doesn't appear there is a way to do this in the online version that will make the reading for the current year come up. I couldn't afford a paper copy in 2015 but our church purchased 2 copies for resources. This has always been the best publication for engaging people in mission and discipleship, and it is unfortunate that the PCUSA doesn't recognize the value of having paper copies visible in congregations. I will note that I'm very computer and website savvy & have delightfully reduced the quantity of paper coming into my home - I just don't like how the elimination of paper will affect use of the Mission Yearbook. Kate Belt, Ruling Elder & Clerk of Session, Colonial Heights Presbyterian Church, Portland OR

    by Kate Belt

    January 2, 2016

  42. www.presbyterianmission.org/yearbook/january-2/

    by Melody Smith

    January 2, 2016

  43. There is a button on the front page of pcusa.org and presbyterianmission.org.

    by Melody Smith

    January 2, 2016

  44. I like the longer narratives, but I find this version will not be as user friendly as the print version. We often referred to the Sunday reading for the time of mission at our worship but this will have to change for us as three pages is a bit long for our "minute for missions". Furthermore, will the entire book be available via PDF download? Will the electronic source remain free or will your agency start charging a price for it? As you probably are aware, there are a lot of questions people will have during this transition.

    by Murray Phillips

    January 2, 2016

  45. I see other people have the same question I do--how do we access the 2016 Mission Yearbook?

    by Rev, Ross B. Kirven

    January 1, 2016

  46. Used the Mission Yearbook since my ordination in 1981. Regret that I have to turn on an electronic device as part of my a.m. devotions...more distracting. Also missing maps. I could always turn back a page or two to locate the country or, today, the Presbytery of the Inland Northwest. Looked it up in 2015 yrbook.

    by Cynthia Cadenhead

    January 1, 2016

  47. I see other people have the same question I do--how do we access the 2016 Mission Yearbook?

    by Faith Jongewaard

    January 1, 2016

  48. Just tell us how to get on the 2016 Year Book. Tomorrow is January 1st, 2016. Thank you

    by Virginia Thomas

    December 31, 2015

  49. When will we be able to download the Mission Yearbook? I truly don't want to miss one day if possible. Right now we are n the midst of tornado driven damage in our area and need as much positive words as possible. I agree with all of those who will miss the MYB tremendously. Hurry and let's move forward in our missions here and far.

    by Hope Sheppard

    December 31, 2015

  50. I know this is a good and necessary change, but I don't know how I will use it for our bulletin. I would use the Sunday entry on the other side of our prayer list insert. It's great that the stories can be longer, but January 3 entry printed out at 3 pages. I don't know how I'll use it but I won't get it figured out for this Sunday!

    by Libby Mobley

    December 31, 2015

  51. I'm bummed. I have read the MYB for 20 + years, ever since Betty McDermitt gave me my first copy at the Presbyterian Church in Westfield. Sure, I can read it on line. Problem is, I probably won't. I work in front of a computer all day. In the mornings at devotional time, it is nice not to have one buzzing in my lap. Not ungrateful for all the work that the MYB staff puts in. Its been a good companion over the years. Thank you.

    by Gregg Amonette

    December 30, 2015

  52. My wife and I use the yearbook as a daily devotional. When will the digital format be available and how does one gain access to it? We will miss the book in our hands but we understand the need for change.

    by R. Michael Healey

    December 30, 2015

  53. I will echo the observations that many people who have used the Yearbook will no longer have access. My little older friend who reads from it for our PWC CT meeting and also each day for herself is just barely able to access her computer for email. Anything beyond that -- searching for information or going to the PC website -- is a problem. She frequently hits the wrong key accidentally and needs her son to come and find the problem. And our PWC moderator refuses to get a computer even one I offered to her free-- Now having said that, I am not a young thing-- 79 next month, but as a teacher, I have had a computer since late 70s and have no difficulty. I am tired of everyone thinking those of us who are computerized have the time and money to pass information on to the other half of the population who doesn't

    by Katharyn Mattson

    December 23, 2015

  54. Realizing changes are necessary but certainly will miss a book in my hand. My 92 year old Presbyterian mentor is sad to see part of her daily devotions leave --as she does not have computer access. I will try to print pages for her but it is not an easy change for her.

    by Sally Andrews

    December 19, 2015

  55. I and other at our church are disappointed in the stopping of paper yearbooks. However, it is understandable given the proposed cost of $34.95. One missing item in the electronic copy is the country profiles. I have them them very informative. Hope they will be included in 2016. I will continue to use the yearbook, just now via the web.

    by Paul Brown

    December 15, 2015

  56. I am saddened to learn about the discontinuation of the MYB in an offline format. While I was raised working on computers, and worked as a software engineer before ministry, I serve a small rural church in which a third to a half of our folks do not have Internet access. We are not alone--many rural areas (in which a lot of our denomination's churches reside) lack anything other than dial-up or very expensive and unreliable satellite Internet. In addition, plenty of folks who sit in our pews did not grow up with computers, have not had cause to learn to use them, or may not have the resources to purchase and maintain them. I am sorry that this resource we have used faithfully in our congregation will no longer be available.

    by Rev. Dr. Brian Wyatt

    December 13, 2015

  57. When and how will the download be available

    by Debby Madden

    November 30, 2015

  58. The 2016 Mission Yeabook will not be available to everyone. I do not access the internet daily so this is a big step backward. Some of my friends have no internet access at all so they have been cutoff completely. Sorry that this segment of our church is forgotten.

    by Carol & Jerry

    November 22, 2015

  59. How do I find the daily Bible readings? I need to put them in the bulletin. Thanks.

    by Peoples Presbyterian Church

    November 11, 2015

  60. Will some content be added for children? I do miss the Children's Mission Yearbook.

    by Sharon Wilcox

    November 5, 2015

  61. Sad for the loss and bracing for another electronic solution. Please keep the country information and international aspect. Could somebody do a brief history (or long history) of the yearbook?

    by george bosworth

    October 28, 2015

  62. While it is not a surprise we are seeing this in the ever increasing world of electronic media, I noticed you never had a link or information on how to subscribe to the 2016 Mission Yearbook in the article. Are you not yet taking orders? Even though printing costs have made the cost less affordable, did the commitee seriously consider those who have little to no electronic media connection?

    by Murray Phillips

    October 1, 2015

  63. When will the 2016 mission yearbook be ready to download?

    by Kathryn Tingley

    September 28, 2015

  64. We plan to use the Yearbook of prayer as a centerpiece of an emphasis on Mission for 2016 similar to this year "The Year of the Bible". Will anything be available in PDF form even a week ahead that could be printed for those who do not have digital access? Will there be the ability for folks to ask to subscribe to the news coming to their inbox? Will there be an app? How far out will the people and places be set in the year? If we want to plan to emphasis different parts of the world throughout the year and our connections at FPC Dallas to those place? Who do we contact? Thanks for work on this which has such a rich and important history in the PCUSA.

    by Miatta Wilson

    September 22, 2015

  65. I hope you will send us easy instructions about accessing the Mission Yearbook on line. Also, some of us would like to be able to pull up for different days of the year when we are emphasizing certain areas of the world. Will you have a table of contents so that we can continue to use the MYB for research?

    by Merilie Robertson

    September 13, 2015

  66. Very sorry to lose print copies...I keep and refer back to them for mission workers and project information...but realistically, few congregations could afford the increased price of a hard copy (our church has usually purchased 50 - 100 copies to put in pews and offer to members). I hope there will be an easy to access version online, and that it will be enthusiastically promoted to congregations so that perhaps more people will actually read the daily messages and learn more about our Presbyterian mission.

    by Diane Hollendonner

    August 18, 2015

  67. I will miss being able to look ahead to particular presbyteries or international mission pages. In the past I have used the print edition to plan devotional a for mission travel. Any possibility to reconsider?

    by L J Miller

    August 17, 2015

  68. Let the PCUSA membership have the a voice in transisting the long heritage of a print copy of the YEARBOOK. OK to put it on internet but many, many PCUSA lack internet. Also, Having only one day at a time defeats the opportunity to seek a new word from a Presbytery or world-mission site. ALso the full cost of the YEARBOOK may be comparable for most books we are willing to buy. Also, YEARBOOK can take a simpler design to deliver the same information for Daily Prayers across our million plus faithful daily petitioners unto the Throne of the Almighty.

    by James Duguid Shotwell SR

    August 14, 2015

  69. I love the Mission Yearbook.. and am so glad it will live on in the hands of Presbyterians and others! Thanks to all for publishing this amazing calendar of prayer for so many years!

    by Deborah Haines

    August 13, 2015

  70. Having lived a while change is a way of life...I've always said if you have the Bible, Book of Order and Mission Yearbook of Prayer...you know what being a PCUSA member is all about!

    by Helen Morrison

    August 12, 2015

  71. Let us Pray!

    by JAmes Duguid Shotwell SR

    August 7, 2015

  72. My grandmother, Mrs James Duguid was a field secretary for the Board of Foreign Missions. Her trips around the earth to encourage and interview our huge Missional supported witnesses included nation missons as well. Then she went about our peak of congregations in the USA to encourage support.\ As Presbyterians find huge changes in the Church "In these Days"we can best serve by using the internet, but only to those who have access to internet. The current time mission must be the same, namely LOVING COMMITMENT OF MIND AND HEART and PRAYER, PRAYER, PRAYER in ALL PRAYER FORMS UNTO THE LORD AND HEAD OF THE UNIVERSAL, AND IMMORTAL EVERLASTING BODY OF THE CHRIST. God bless the Mission 2016 Mission Yearbook for Prayer and Study. Prayer is the good seed of all our hopes.

    by James Duguid Shotwell SR

    August 7, 2015

  73. I have had Mission Yearbook as home page for many years but have always purchased a print copy to use in workshops and to promote PCUSA mission

    by kristen gerling

    August 6, 2015

  74. Be sure and keep us posted as the new format develops so we can make input and be supportive.

    by Bryce Little Jr

    August 6, 2015

  75. Great!

    by Carolyn Newcomb

    August 6, 2015

  76. When is the Mission Yearbook for Prayer and Study be available in languages other than English?

    by Tony Aja

    August 6, 2015