Word of the Day: Sodality

23 May

Sodality definition - the mobile, apostolic Church

Today we reach an exciting turning point in our Word of the Day series! Over the next few weeks we'll unpack terms related to the structure of the church in its local form and the church in its global/sent form, and their key distinctions.


noun | sew-dal-uh-tee

  1. The “sent” church that pioneers new ground for the Kingdom of God.
  2. Participants in a sodality often feel a vocational call to apostolic missionary work, cross barriers (linguistic, social, cultural), and aren’t put off by the fact that eating local delicacies, like goat eyeballs, with a neighbor might just open the door for a conversation about Jesus.
  3. Inherently entrepreneurial, not centered on one geographic location, and often resulting in the planting of local churches (modalities) or spawning other sodalities (missionary organizations).
  4. Characterized by being highly mobile and deployable, with a high level of commitment and more strict demands (often expressed in a “rule”) required of participants.

Example: Biff really feels at home serving as a missionary in the sodality expression of church — he loves making long treks to share the Gospel with people in remote villages, studying the Bible in Cambodian with a new believer, and yes, he also appreciates the taste of tarantula.


What is Word of the Day? Every now and then some pretty big words show up on this blog and in the books we recommend. That’s why we’ve created this “Word of the Day” series to shine a little light on things. We hope it helps. Write us if something still isn’t making sense.

Right now we’re featuring words that appear in President Sam Metcalf’s new book, Beyond the Local ChurchOrder your copy here.