by Chris Wright, Langham Partnership International Director
Many of you know the problem of wearing several hats, bearing different responsibilities. I can sympathize. As well as my role in LPI, I am also the Chair of the Lausanne Theology Working Group. This takes up only a small fraction of my time, but I believe it contributes to a movement that is resurgent and making a renewed impact on the world church, and I would like to tell you a bit about it.
The LTWG has a steering committee of about 10 people, a core membership of around 20, and its working consultations usually bring together between 25-30 people. These are men and women from all around the world, with proven commitment to biblical and evangelical theology and missional engagement.
Under the leadership of Doug Birdsall and Lindsay Brown, Lausanne is moving forward. Lausanne is planning a third major congress in Cape Town, South Africa, in October 2010. If you want to check out the plans for that, here is the URL.
In preparation for this, the LTWG is focusing on the core ‘slogan’ of Lausanne. The Lausanne Covenant (1974) defined ‘evangelization’ as ‘the whole church taking the whole gospel to the whole world’. This has ensured that the explicit theology of mission within the Lausanne movement has been integral and holistic.
Accordingly, the LTWG, will be tackling these themes in the following order:
• The Whole Gospel February 2008
• The Whole Church January 2009
• The Whole World February 2010
However, while the slogan has a rich resonance and an obvious meaning and appeal, we cannot claim that we have fully explored the depth of what is entailed by each of the three phrases. (Read Chris’ additional statements.)
I encourage you to keep informed about developments in the Lausanne movement and to pray for the plans for Cape Town 2010.
Warm greetings and blessings in Christ,