Tasks of Ministry in the Urban Context
Prepared by Fletcher L Tink

I. Through the Church

  1. Worship: The public gathering of the “committed Christians” who honor, celebrate, and enjoy the presence of God through a variety of group activities focused towards Him.

  2. Proclamation: The public preaching and declaration of the Good News as informed by the Word, contextualized to the world, and enlivened by the Spirit.

  3. Evangelism: The presentation of the claims of Jesus Christ upon sinners, to persuade them to seek new life in Him, though recognition and confession of sin, remorse and repentance, and receiving by faith the gift of eternal life. Evangelism is the declaration of Good News that address not just sinners but all of creation as redeemable.

  4. Discipleship:Subsequent to salvation is the walk with Jesus Christ in obedience and faithfulness with the intent to “grow in grace and in the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ”. It is the renewing of mind, body and soul as ongoing discipline. Discipleship is best fulfilled in community.

  5. Fellowship: The nature of the Gospel is always worked through and mediated within the community of believers who, in turn, are strengthened to serve others.  There is no religion solitaire, only the “social” Gospel.

  6. Stewardship: The utilization of all resources for the advancement of the Kingdom of God, including talents, time and material possessions.

  7. Service:The ministry of the Church to those outside its walls as a commitment to the betterment of the community, “seeking the shalom of the City.”  

II. Within the Larger Community (Service)

  1. Social Service: Responding to the basic needs of one’s neighbor and neighborhood. “Helping those who hurt”

  2. Advocacy:Giving voice to those who are unable to adequately and effectively represent themselves in ways that leverage meaningful, life-affirming change. “Speaking for those who hurt”

  3. Community Development: Identifying and bringing resources to bear for the betterment of the community in ways that are life-affirming and enhancing. “Changing the circumstances that cause the hurt”

  4. Community Organization: Organizing those in the community to represent their own interests in ways that transform positively communities and neighborhoods. “Leaving in place people who make sure the hurts don’t happen again.” 

III. John Perkins 3 “R’s” of Community Restoration

  1. Relocation: It is disingenuous to try to help people from afar.We become impassioned and authentic only if we also share in the suffering of those who suffer, as incarnational servants.

  2. Redistribution: Because resources tend to flow where resources already exists, and away from those impoverished, serious and intentional commitment needs to reverse the flow.

  3. Reconciliation: Because hurt and misunderstanding play a significant role in self-esteem or lack of it, Christ becomes the model of suffering to bring about reconciliation between populations and people historically antagonized by each other.