Metokos Ministries 2.0

  • The name for Metokos Ministries comes from the story in Luke 5 where the first class of disciples is found fishing. After listening to Jesus comment on their net placement, and following his direction, the fishermen of one boat found their nets breaking under the load of were too many fish for one boat. “They signaled to their partners in the other boat to come and help them.” (v. 7) The Greek word used here to indicate the other boat coming to help is the action-verb metokos.  Metokos Ministries wants to partner, metokos, as we come alongside congregations as we listen together as Jesus tells us where to place our nets.  Are you wondering how to say the word? Don Clements, who founded Metokos Ministries, told me he gave the name an “Appalachian sound.”  (Think Sissy Spacek in the  film “Coal Miner’s Daughter”)  When I came on board, I gave our ministry a vision statement – “Church Revitalization Through Collaboration.”

In the next few weeks I will post blog entries on the ministry’s site, First, I will consider our understanding of church revitalization, particularly in regard to revitalization’s differences from, and similarities to, renewal and revival. To revitalize, in our context means, simply, to bring back life that has been lost to those who follow the one who called simple fishermen.

The second topic will be the application of collaboration as a cultural foundation of our Biblical ministry. For some collaboration is a new ministry word. Primarily a buzz word today for organizations, teams, and startups, I will show that collaboration is an ancient Biblical practice. The fishermen partnered (Metokos), to bring in something one boat of men could not do by themselves. They came alongside and helped complete a common task or goal. I will differentiate between the tools of collaboration and the culture of collaboration.

My third set of topics will be the use of the survey designed and developed by founder Don Clements as an instrument/tool for church revitalization, enabling churches to create a way forward.

Metokos Ministries wants to cast our nets and come alongside to partner with the over 900 Presbyterian Church in America congregations that are under 100 members. I will address how this works in a Presbyterian Church. One of our goals is to give it away as much as possible. Though we are beginning with PCA churches, we plan to work with churches outside the PCA in the near future. We want to cast our nets as a “Bricks and Clicks,” ministry. Our bricks will be, in the words of MIT sociologist Sherry Turkle,  “Reclaiming Conversation.” This reclamation can be accomplished by phone, email, and Skype, as well as personal visits and conversations. Our clicks will be an expanded web presence for resources, ideas and training, enabling people to dip into Metokos Ministries before they contact us. Our Facebook posts will be intended to keep the awareness of church revitalization in people’s minds and thoughts, and people can help our ministry of revitalization by sharing posts and links.

Yes, change is hard and often sad as churches let go and grab onto the future with new people and the changes new people bring to our shared lives. Churches are people who share worship, mercy ministries, and discipleship ministries. Further, churches are called to be salt and light as they make disciples of all the nations. The heart of Metokos is to partner through collaboration to equip and to enable local congregations to make the first steps through a revitalized vision and mission for their local churches as they experience new life in Christ through the Holy Spirit in their local community.

Let’s go – alongside and together.


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