Long-time leader wrestles with faithful response in a secular age

We live in a culture that is “illiterate to Christian ideas, often hostile to them,” says John Vissers. “Clearly communicating the heart of the Christian faith presents a very significant challenge, especially in the midst of hostility.”

Vissers is moderator of the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church of Canada. He has also been ordained minister for more than 30 years and was the former principal of Presbyterian College in Montreal.

As a Christian leader, he wrestles with how to respond faithfully and effectively in a secular age.

“I am encouraged by the Church’s openness to explore new forms of worship and models of leadership. The Church has made a concerted effort to understand the culture, but we need to engage the culture more outside the Church’s four walls.”

This summer, Vissers spent three weeks in Ghana and Malawi visiting churches, seminaries and relief projects. He describes their evangelism, discipleship, and social justice work all flowing as one effort, “focused on following Jesus, and bearing witness to Him in word and deed… It makes you wish that Canadian Christians had more passion.”

He believes the Church is witnessing a dramatic shift in the global Christian movement where the next century will be propelled forward by leaders from developing countries.

“We need to listen to, and learn from, our cross-cultural brothers and sisters. This is a partnership and their society is in a different place … Read More