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Called To Lead-For Just Such A Time As This

Author: Charles Whitehead

Picture: Leadership by Nick Youngson, Blue Diamond Gallery, Alpha Stock Images

Called To Lead-For Just Such A Time As This

Effective, Spirit-filled leaders will be essential in the Church of the future, says Charles Whitehead, as new book "Called To Lead" is released.

I have written this book because good lay leadership in the Church is becoming more and more important as the number of priests gradually declines in many areas.

Lay leadership, both male and female, is already making an important contribution in different parts of the life of the Church. This will become even more necessary as we face an uncertain future.

Our current experience of the coronavirus has forced us to completely change our ways of being church communities, and the future patterns we will be following are still far from obvious.

What will it mean to be a leader in the Church "for just such a time as this?"

Staying Close To The Lord

 "Called to Lead" has all Church leaders in mind - clergy, religious, lay, young and old alike.

My aim has been to focus on the key issues all leaders need to address, both in their personal spiritual lives where it is essential to maintain a close relationship with the Lord, in their relationships with fellow leaders, and very importantly with all those they are leading.

I have also considered the kinds of questions they will regularly have to face. I had in mind not just leadership in the Catholic Charismatic Renewal but in the Church generally, and secular leadership as well, where appropriate.

I have attempted to stimulate constructive thinking on a wide range of issues, and I have tried to write in a way that allows the book to be used for private reflection, or for small group study and discussion among leaders.

Drawing On My Own Experience

My own experience of Church leadership goes back to 1977, and over the years I have held a wide variety of leadership responsibilities in many different parts of the Catholic Church as well as ecumenically - locally, nationally and internationally.

My personal journey also covers the thirty five years I spent in the world of business and industry, both full-time and part-time, for much of which I was responsible for several subsidiary companies of a Swedish forestry group.

The foreword to the book is written by David Oakley, Bishop of Northampton, and includes these very helpful words:

Things are changing in the Church and they will have to change even more in the days ahead. Some might fear this. They should not fear because history shows us God is working with power in our own time. Others will be encouraged by the outpouring of the Holy Spirit. Charles has certainly focused on one of the most important and pressing needs in our ecclesial world today - the need for sound leadership. There is much to think about in his twenty chapters........I commend this book to all who are called to leadership in the Church.

There is no doubt, in my own mind, that good Christian leadership will help ensure that, whatever the future may hold, and whatever plans God may have for his people, we can face the years ahead with confidence, and lead those for whom we are responsible forward-always under the guidance, and in the power, of the Holy Spirit, and for just such a time as this.

  • Called To Lead is published by New Life Publishing and available here from Goodnews Books, £8.99.

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