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Leadership & Followership

There is a widespread and common understanding that any group of people intent on achieving a purpose must have a strong leader. The Gilbert & Sullivan character, The Duke of Plaza-Toro who "led his regiment from behind, (he found it less exciting)" is seen to be ridiculous. However, it is also clear that strong leadership breeds dependency amongst followers and can burden leaders with unbearable expectations. (The Charge to a Priest in the CofE Service of Ordination is an example)

However, Leadership contains a number of elements within it: vision, prophecy, decisiveness, fortitude, organisation, accountability, encouragement, and so on. This alone would suggest that within any group of people, the gifts and functions that comprise leadership might be located in different individuals and thus that at best Leadership might be shared.

New Way believes that
  • A Small Christian Community (SCC) functions best when no one member is in a dominant position.
  • Leadership is seen to be the responsibility of all according to their gifts.
  • There is a recognition of mutual interdependency within the community.
  • Responsibility and Accountability can be a assumed by the whole Community when each member is seen to be accountable to each other and to the community for their own actions and for the life of the community as a whole.
  • This mutual interdependency and shared accountability models God in Trinity.
  • Similarly, all the members of the community are Followers as well as Leaders; both learners and teachers, doers as well as inspirers.

In this way, no one becomes dependent and no one carries too heavy a burden.
Galatians 6.2


Building Kingdom-shaped communities
  © New Way of Being Church 2007