What is Soma?
“SOMA is a family of ministries offering encouragement, order and covering to its members by the operation of the five-fold ministry through a network of spiritual fathers.”
SOMA is a family of ministries.
Using the family as a model, SOMA is a fellowship of ministries who gives and receives life from one another. The psalmist declared that “God sets the solitary in families” (Psalm 68:6a NKJV ). It is our goal, therefore, to provide a place where people are nurtured and grown, giving life to subsequent generations of believers and ministries.
We believe that spiritual parents produce spiritual children. In keeping with that concept, we believe that every pastor needs a pastor. The basis of our unity, therefore, rests in our ability to relate to one another as a family instead of members of an organization. The core of SOMA’s existence is relational.
SOMA is a fellowship of ministries that brings order to life.
As the vine and branches work together to bring forth fruit, SOMA promotes the expression of life through each individual ministry. SOMA is structured in such a way as to enhance each ministry’s connection of life from vine to vine, recognizing and promoting the individuality of each ministry. As the arbor is to the grapevine, so is SOMA to the ministries we serve.
SOMA is a group of individual ministries.
We recognize that each ministry is unique. We believe that there should be freedom for every ministry to express their own individual gifts and calling within their respective communities. We, therefore, celebrate our uniqueness and see our individuality as a strength within our fellowship.
SOMA is an affiliation of ministries focused on growth.
We believe that each ministry should be encouraged to express their reproductive nature. This brings regenerative life to the vine and allows each ministry to give birth and expand their influence. It is our aim, therefore, to govern SOMA in such a way as to allow capable ministries to be raised up and used by God to create new families as God allows.
SOMA is an association of ministries using a biblical model of ministry.
We see the roles of all five offices mentioned in Ephesians 4:11-16 as being vital for the“equipping the saints for the work of ministry” and “for the edifying the body of Christ.”We further believe that the maturity of the Body of Christ also mentioned in this passage is impossible without the functioning of all five of Christ’s ministry gifts to His church.
We believe it is vital for us, as leaders in the church, to accept this paradigm of ministry and recognize the role of teachers, pastors, evangelists, prophets and apostles in our midst. We gladly, therefore, participate in establishing and functioning within this biblical model, seeing no need of excluding any of these offices from the church.
Having been given these offices by Christ, we feel it necessary, therefore, to use the terms given to us by our Lord. while not confusing the “office of apostle” with the twelve apostles of the Lamb, who hold special honor on earth and in heaven (see: revelation 21:14), we see no need of abandoning this term when used to describe the office of “one who is sent from God with special abilities to birth and/or oversee ministries with a father’s heart.”