The Growing Leaders courses are widely used throughtout the UK and Republic of Ireland. Here the thoughts and experiences of some leaders and participants are shared.
'Growing Leaders is one of the key tools I recommend to clergy of all traditions keen to develop a culture of growth and participation in their churches.
'Many churches in London Diocese are now run Growing Leaders courses, from all the Church of England traditions and demographic situations of the diocese. I have been particularly keen to promote the course in catholic parishes, many of whom have been excited by the potential and impact of Growing Leaders.
'The great joy of the material is not only its high quality but also its flexibility and inclusive approach. The course operates relationally and opens up possibilities for the participants, rather than forcing them through a 'sausage machine'. It is a hugely important tool in developing a culture of growth in our churches, encouraging a can-do approach to mission and ministry.'
Rev Neil Evans, Director of Training, London Diocese.
'The need to grow Christian leaders goes way beyond the remit of theological colleges and missionary training institutions. Our growth potential as a church - in terms of numbers, depth and our impact on the society around us - will largely depend on the number of ordinary Christians willing to take spiritual responsibility for the benefit of their churches, communities, families, schools and workplaces.
'I've seen Growing Leaders work brilliantly among both adults and young people in suburban, rural and inner-city settings - encouraging Christians to step up to the mark and to assume that mantle of spiritual responsibility for themselves. I commend the course to you wholeheartedly.'
Bishop Andrew Watson, Bishop of Guildford.
'The church is full of gifted and talented leaders but their gifts and talents are all too often overlooked within the church. GrowingLeaders is an excellent way of identifying and developing those gifts and then releasing them into the life of the church.
'The effects of Growing Leaders cascades through the whole life of the church. Established leaders grow in confidence and new leaders emerge while those who are led are brought closer to God and, in turn, their own gifts are identified and released.
'The material is of a very high standard and is supported by some very good web based resources. Everything has been carefully prepared, and thoroughly tested. The combination of teaching, group work and individual mentoring makes it unbeatable.
'I have heard of Growing Leaders being run in churches of different sizes, contexts and churchmanship. All you need are people who want to lead more effectively and grow closer to God.'
Bishop Roger Morris, Area Bishop of Colchester.