Formation of Leaders
The Where and the How
God works in neighborhoods. We live in neighborhoods. God’s got work for us to do there. Every response to grace and every life–change transpires in a particular place. Jesus’ disciple–making mandate (Matthew 28:18–20) is a call for all Christians. It encompasses both initial conversion and ongoing growth. That’s why people are the Army’s biggest resource.
Just like the first disciples, we need experiences and training to make us ready. By the time Jesus gave the Great Commission, 28 chapters in Matthew had already recorded the disciples learning and serving with Him. All along, their formation was happening, whether they were on the giving or receiving end of a teaching, ministry, or miracle.
That’s how the process of making disciples works. As I contribute to developing them, I also grow. Conversely, my greatest gift to my Christian friends is to invite them to participate in my formation. In doing so, they grow. This happens best within a small, stable group of friends.
Why the LEAD Summit?
Every congregation needs local leaders with the character and competence to serve and to reach people in their neighborhoods. So, the Salvation Army hosts the LEAD Summit to equip people for mission in neighborhoods and at corps throughout the USA Eastern Territory.
Every leader needs concrete skills and relevant knowledge. They also need times of retreat and reflection, spiritual discipline, and vocational discernment. The LEAD Summit weaves each of these aspects into a weeklong gathering of dedicated leaders from across the territory.
LEAD is for Salvationists who desire to grow in Christ and in their capacity for service. It’s for people who serve in a local corps, whether they are a veteran or a novice. LEAD’s foremost aim is to empower and encourage Salvationists to achieve their greatest capacity for mission in their local context.
What We Do at LEAD
Each day, we gather for inspiring worship; we learn through expert instruction, hands–on experience, and dialogue; we connect deeply with peers; and we acquire mission–critical skills and knowledge in classes on topics such as discipling young people, integrated mission, current social issues, how to lead children, and small group disciple–making.
Time is reserved for mapping our personal journey and for contemplating our calling. As a result, we return home better equipped as ambassadors of Christ in our neighborhoods and as corps leaders. We gain fresh insights and renewed possibilities for service.
by Isaiah Allen
The LEAD Summit is held at the University of New England in Biddeford, Maine from Saturday, July 28 through Saturday, August 4, 2018 in conjunction with the Old Orchard Beach Camp Meetings. If you’re interested in the 2018 LEAD Summit, talk to your corps officer. Applications and further details can be found at www.saconnects.org/LEAD.