The Third Anglican Leadership Institute is now history. As I write some are still in the air, and some have landed and rejoined their families.
And what a great group they were. They spanned the full Anglican spectrum:
- - From the Rector of a posh downtown parish in a mid-sized Australian city to the General Secretary of the Anglican Church of Burundi;
- - From a Rector in Brunei where Sharia Law prevents him from even having a Christmas tree outside the Church to a leader of young adults in a large Brazilian church who surfs in his spare time;
- - From a bishop in northern Nigeria where unless a man "steals" another man's wife his own wife might accuse him of "not really being a man" to the assistant Rector of a booming Northern Ireland church who finished off 6 books while he was with us;
- - From a former "Lost Boy" of South Sudan who runs a diocese that cannot afford him any salary and whose family must live in exile to a Deacon who assists the former President of GAFCON...
And on it goes. 16 marvelous people -- all Anglicans from 12 enormously different socio-economic situations living in cultures vastly different from each other. Yet all united in Jesus Christ and experiencing the joy of becoming a family. Our closing dinner was a time of deep prayer followed by hugs all around. Those Africans love to hug.
We spent nearly four weeks learning, laughing and listening to one another's experiences. Afternoon trips to Goodwill where bags of clothing would be purchased for just a few dollars, to meeting with the Mayor of Charleston, and a Medal of Honor winner -- each day involved study, prayer, discussion and eating -- yes, eating Western food that despite hesitation they devoured thanks to our wonderful hostess/cook.
Our week-long teachers came from Vancouver, Philadelphia and London, and shared their expertise on Post-Modernism, Biblical counseling, historical leaders who brought renewal to the church through the ages, and the spirituality of a leader. Their lectures will soon be on our website. Visits from accomplished C.E.O's, and input from bishops all rounded out a month that was rich in content but left time for great fun together.
Each morning a local priest became our "chaplain-of-the-day" and led in worship and sharing thoughts from the daily lectionary. They were then interviewed about the distinctives of their ministries.
Our trustees and local friends put on a Low Country "Boil", an Oyster Roast, a 18th. Century luncheon, an English Tea, and provided warm coats and sweaters to insulate them against our January breezes.
There was so much more. But I want to thank our supporters for your interest, encouragement and prayer. Some of these were sent to us by you! As you think about the future of this Institute, perhaps someone you identify as an "emerging leader" from your part of the Communion needs to be part of one of these in the future? Our next A.L.I. will be September, 2017 and then again January, 2018. September is nearly full; but January, 2018 is not.
I had a lot of volunteer help, including invaluable help from my wife, Sandra. This comes with our best wishes and prayers for God's blessing on your ministries
Peter Moore, Director, Anglican Leadership Institute