Ankura Ministries Timeline
Below you will find a detailed timeline of Ankura Ministries’ history. It will tell the story of our founder, how Ankura came to be, and how it has transformed into the organization it is today!
Our story begins in the spring of 2009, when our founder, Matt Murray, was attending college at Indiana Wesleyan University. While there, he attended several events on world missions. Through these events he got connected with the resident missionaries at the school who helped broaden Matt’s knowledge and interest in missions work as a career.
It was in the summer of 2009 when Matt took his first international missions trips to Honduras and Australia. Through these trips Matt felt confirmation in his call to do world missions. He dropped out of school and started searching for opportunities for him to serve around the world.
After receiving his call, Matt began searching for organizations that would help him launch his dreams. However, for one reason or another, he was unable to find an organization where he fit in, or where he felt he could accomplish the things God was putting on his heart. At this time he began to pray, “God, if this is your will for my life, then why can’t I find a place where I fit?” This is when Matt began thinking, “there has to be a better way to do this!”
It was at this point that Matt started to do research and formulate a plan to create an organization of his own that would allow him to do missions the way he felt it should be done. Out of this searching, Five Stone Missions was born.
However, now that Matt had this idea and a plan, the journey was just beginning. It was during this time that Matt began to rekindle an old friendship with Aaron Hall. And it was through their friendship, their shared passion for improving the modern missions model, and their late night discussions that helped them settle on creating something new that would help the ragamuffin ministers reach the mission field in a timely, cost effective and responsible manner. Although, they had the plan and the passion it would still be a few years before things really got off the ground. During this time Matt, went back to school and finished his degree while slowly working to build the ministry.
A New Name
In the fall of 2011, Matt began fostering another friendship that would help to define the next season for Five Stone Missions. It was through his discussions with Dan Mori, and subsequent partnership, that Matt decided the ministry needed a new name that was easier to remember and better reflected the goal of the ministry at the time. This new name would be CODE Ministries, which stands for COmmunity DEvelopment Ministries, and would be the name of the ministry for over 6 years.
While things were heating up with the newly named CODE Ministries, Matt decided that he was going to go on a little trip, to start researching ministries and locations around the world. And, in the summer of 2012 he set out on a trip called the World Race, a short term missions trip that took him to 11 countries in 11 months, from Europe to Africa and all over Asia. On this trip Matt found where he would serve in his first long term capacity. Thailand!
However, before he could go out to Thailand, he needed to return home for a few months and work closely with his board of directors, Darlene Murray, Daniel Mori, and Aaron Hall to get the ministry up and running. And, in September of 2013 CODE Ministries launched it’s first missionary, Aaron Hall to go serve at a inner-city rehab and community outreach center in Kansas City, Missouri, and then a week later Matt set off to work with and anti-trafficking ministry in Chiang May, Thailand.
Since that time CODE Ministries saw tremendous growth. Adding several new missionaries in locations all over the world. We have expanded our resources, our training materials, and our vision. We have seen some missionaries come and go, however, we continue to see everyone that has served with our ministry continue with their passion of serving God’s people. After several years of operation under the name and mission of CODE Ministries, Matt and the board felt like it was time for one more change, to help usher in a new season and a new direction for the ministry.
That brings us to the present. In February 2018, CODE Ministries finalized the name change to Ankura Ministries. We chose this new name because we want to be an anchor of hope for missionaries who don’t feel like they fit into the mold of other missions organizations. To send them out, and for them to bring the hope of Jesus Christ to a lost and hopeless world.