The mission of the United Methodist Church is “to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world. Local churches and extension ministries of the Church provide the most significant arenas through which disciple-making occurs” (Book of Discipline, ¶120).
Discipleship is at the heart of what United Methodists do in our churches and extension ministries. It’s why we exist!
A Dictionary for United Methodists (Waltz, 1991) defines discipleship as “The active living of the individual Christian in accordance with the teachings of Jesus Christ, that is, being as effective a disciple of Christ as possible.”
In John 15:5, Jesus describes both the relationship to him and the process for growth. “I am the vine, you are the branches. Those who abide in me and I in them bear much fruit, because apart from me you can do nothing.” Disciples of Jesus are those who have an ongoing relationship with Jesus which becomes known to others through the fruit of their lives.
The United Methodist Church believes that “as Christian disciples, we are not passive spectators but energetic participants in God’s activity in the world. Because of what God has done for us, we offer our lives back to God. We order our lives in ways that embody Christ’s ministry in our families, workplaces, communities, and the world.”
The Discipleship Ministry Team of the Oklahoma Annual Conference exists to provide resource, partnerships and strategies so that all local congregations in the Oklahoma conference are effective at making world-transforming disciples.
Ministries in the area of discipleship include youth, young adults, rural and smaller membership churches, spiritual formation, evangelism, Christian education, safe sanctuaries and safety, disability awareness, camp and retreat ministry, higher education and campus ministry, and human sexuality and awareness training.
In addition, lay-led organizations including the Conference Council on Youth Ministry, United Methodist Men and United Methodist Women relate to Discipleship.
For more information regarding discipleship ministries, click on any of the links to the left of this page or contact Rev. Derrek Belase, Director of Connectional Ministries, firstname.lastname@example.org, 405-530-2020.
*Grapes photo by Rohit Tandon on Unsplash