It all started in 2001 when a group of singles met on a Saturday morning at Stonebriar Community Church. Michael Patton, the founder and president of the ministry and, then, pastor at the church, led this group through a course on how to think through theological issues. It was such a success that the class was then offered to the entire church. Soon, one course turned into six and one church turned into thousands.
Even before 2001 we can say the ministry truly started in 1999 as Michael Patton was in Dr. John Hannah’s class at Dallas Theological Seminary. As he learned from Dr. Hannah, all Michael could think was “This is the most exciting stuff I have ever learned. I have been in the church all my life and most of this stuff is brand new to me. This needs to get out more in Evangelicalism. Michael’s dream/vision became to take theology to the average lay-person.
Since that first meeting back in 2001, the ministry has incorporated as Reclaiming the Mind Ministries, a not-for-profit 501(c)3. The goal is to make theology accessible by providing high quality teaching and theological training to everyone in the church.
- 2001: First class taught at Stonebriar Community Church in Frisco, TX.
- 2002: First formal “The Theology Program” courses began to be taught at Stonebriar Community Church. Hundreds of people from churches all over the Frisco/Dallas area began to engage in theology.
- 2003: Bible.org began to post The Theology Program classes on their site. Hundreds of thousands of people began to learn.
- 2004: The first Theology Unplugged Podcast was recorded at a studio at Dallas Theological Seminary. Now Theology Unplugged is the most popular theology podcast on iTunes.
- 2005: All six courses of The Theology Program complete and on video. Hundreds of churches are now using the material in their own churches, small groups, and Sunday school classes.
- 2005: The first virtual classes of The Theology Program were taught online through a program called Paltalk. There were over sixty students enrolled in the beta course.
- 2006: Reclaiming the Mind Ministries was incorporated as a not-for-profit ministry.
- 2007: The Parchment and Pen Blog was started by Michael Patton to aid and disciple the church in theology. It is constantly ranked as the #1 religious blog in the world by Technorati.
- 2009: The Credo House was build in Edmond, OK to facilitate the ministry. The Credo House is a theological coffee, book, and theology shop.
- 2010: Tim Kimberley, Th.M. DTS, is brought on as executive director of the Credo House.
- 2010: Introduction of the Bible Boot Camp initiative. Bible book camps consist of four 45-min lessons in essential areas of theology. Hundreds of churches are already getting involved.
- 2010: Introduction of The Discipleship Program. This program consists of five sessions of “What to Believe” and five session of “What to Do.”
- 2010: Theology in the News, the “Credo App” for the iPhone, and many other projects on the way.