13 September 2012
We are all called to lead – Evangelical Alliance Council
Christians must create a culture of leadership to engage effectively in the public square, the Evangelical Alliance Council has heard.
The Council, made up of church and organisational leaders from across the evangelical spectrum, met this week to discuss advocacy in politics and the media.
Dave Landrum, director of advocacy at the Alliance, said: "In a world saturated with noise, it's beholden upon us before God to think about our communication. If God changes the world by speaking through his people, what we say to the world clearly matters to God.
"If we really want to impact our culture, we have to think about how we develop a voice and public leadership in the UK."
Gavin Shuker MP said that although it is not fashionable to be a member of a political party, we should be involved in our communities because we have something important to contribute.
"One of the reasons the political sphere is important is that many of the decisions about what we will be as a nation in the next 20-30 years are being made now," he said.
"We're called to be the Bible that most people read, which is why we've got to be present."
Jonathan Chaplain, director of the Kirby Laing Institute for Christian Ethics, and Elim general superintendent John Glass said Christians need to have a united front to speak confidently and coherently in public.
Lloyd Cooke, chief executive of Saltbox Christian Centre in Stoke-on-Trent, who appears regularly in the media, said it is important to build good relationships and credibility with people in power. And Nims Obunge, chief executive of Peace Alliance, added that in these relationships we must always remember that we are accountable to God over men, no matter how powerful they are.
A number of speakers said we must not leave leadership to an elite few, but rather create a culture of Christians who are able to lead. Kate Coleman, chair of the Alliance's Council and director of Next Leadership, and Care chief executive Nola Leach, spoke out about the need to raise up leaders beyond the church, in areas such as politics, the media and education.
Dr Landrum said the Alliance is going to respond to this need by developing training for churches, networks and organisations, using the expertise of leadership organisations who are part of the Evangelical Alliance.
If your church or leadership network is interested in finding out more, contact Lucy Olofinjana at firstname.lastname@example.org.