I was quite honored recently to be invited to speak and participate in the first Lausanne Movement Consultation on Global Media. It was a group of about 50 representatives from around the world working in media. The meeting was an extension of the famous Lausanne Movement launched by Evangelist Billy Graham. In 1966 he partnered with Christianity Today magazine, and sponsored the World Congress on Evangelism in Berlin. This gathering drew 1,200 delegates from over 100 countries, and inspired further conferences in Singapore (1968), Minneapolis and Bogotá (1969), and Australia (1971). Shortly afterwards, Graham perceived the need for a larger, more diverse congress to re-frame Christian mission in a world of social, political, economic, and religious upheaval.
So in July 1974 some 2,700 participants and guests from over 150 nations gathered in Lausanne, Switzerland, and created the “Lausanne Covenant.” This was to be a Covenant with God, publicly declared, and a Covenant with one another; it has proved to be one of most widely-used documents in modern church history. The Covenant has helped to define evangelical theology and practice, and has set the stage for many new partnerships and alliances.
Last week’s consultation on global media raised the question of how partnerships around the world could leverage media to help share the Christian faith with the world. Exciting things are happening, and our new Influence Lab will be on the leading edge of those changes. The Influence Lab has just recently been launched, but this Lausanne Consultation on Global Media has reminded me just how important our work is, and how much needs to be done to teach, train, and inspire a new generation of church leaders to embrace media on a global basis.
Check out our website for The Influence Lab. We’d love your help!