SBTS professor Timothy Paul Jones unveils the ‘Urban Ministry Podcast’
A new Southern Seminary podcast hosted by professor Timothy Paul Jones will prepare pastors to minister more effectively in urban communities. The podcast is a resource of the Dehoney Center for Urban Ministry Training, which Jones serves as director, and its first episode released on February 25.
In addition to his responsibilities as the C. Edwin Gheens Professor of Christian Family Ministry and associate vice president for Global Campus, Jones was appointed director of the Dehoney Center in 2018. He is also an elder at Sojourn Church Midtown.
In each episode of the Urban Ministry Podcast, Jones interviews men or women who serve in urban contexts and asks them about the challenges they face in ministry. The interviewees are not just pastors or church planters, according to Jones, but also teachers, counselors, and social workers.
With more and more people migrating to cities, Jones said, the need for strategic and faithful urban ministry is greater than ever. This podcast was the right way to prepare ministers in urban contexts for what they face.
“From the first time I ever set foot in the core of a city when I was around six or seven years old, I have loved everything about urban contexts,” Jones said. “I enjoy learning about cities, reading the histories of cities, walking in cities, and using public transit. But, at a deeper level, it’s a needed topic because people are increasingly gravitating toward cities.
“Because the future is increasingly urban, Christians must develop deeper understandings of how to reach people with the gospel in cities.”
The weekly podcast will cover a wide range of topics, from racial diversity and refugee ministry to preaching in the inner city and taking care of one’s family during long term urban ministry.
According to Jones, the urban ministry podcast first took shape when he began developing his own personal podcast on apologetics, called Three Chords and the Truth. At the same time, Jones was appointed the director of thee Dehoney Center. He decided to focus the resources of the Dehoney Center on one program designed to reach as many people as possible. Finding that there were only a few podcasts on the topic of urban ministry, Jones decided to create one.
There is no one-size-fits-all approach to urban ministry, Jones said, so the podcast encourages listeners to think strategically about their unique urban communities.
“Urban ministries are as unique and distinct as the contexts where these ministries take place,” Jones said. “Don’t try simply to take what you hear in this podcast and try to drop it into your context without adapting and contextualizing it. Let these ideas and conversations inspire you to be the missionary in your context, learning the unique dynamics of the place where God has placed you.”
The podcast has released three episodes, including interviews with Southern Seminary graduate Jamaal Williams and former Boyce College professor Kevin Jones. Find episodes of the podcast at Southern Equip.