Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ category

Vista 29 coming soon

January 10, 2018

With the first edition of 2018, VISTA will feature the topic of Islam in Europe. Our regular readers will immediately note the timeliness of this subject. We have a number of expert writers and practitioners lined up to offer their evidence-based insights.

However, one of our authors has agreed in faith to write for us. As a top-rate journalist and researcher of Islam, Jenny Taylor, is supported by a small charity that she established to enable her to engage at the important intersection of religion and the media.

We want to affirm her ministry and acknowledge her generosity in agreeing to write about Tablighi Jamaat.

VISTA receives no funds and exists solely because our team of co-editors is supported by other means of employment. Jenny does not currently enjoy this benefit and we want to encourage one or two of you to directly support her writing for this edition by following this link and making a small one-off donation to her ministry.

If you donate, please make a note in the Detail box that your donation is related to here article for VISTA.

Please feel free to contact Darrell Jackson if you have any questions about this

Evangelicals and the Phenomenon of Leadership in the former Soviet Union

January 2, 2018

Leadership theory and practice is essential to effective Christian mission, yet as a multi-faceted, culturally conditioned phenomenon, it is often underestimated and lacking in critical examination. Indeed, greater cultural understanding can be crucial for effective cross-cultural leadership, as secular theorists such as Geert Hofstede have shown.

However, research among Christian communities is often lacking. To help meet this need, Hodos Institute and the Graduate School of Leadership (GSL) at St. Petersburg Christian University carried out extensive research in 2015-16 among evangelical youth (ages 13-29) and youth leaders across 13 countries of Eurasia (former Soviet Union – FSU). The results of this study can be helpful for mission leaders and missionaries in the FSU, as well as in Eastern Europe.

In the first phase of the project, 245 interviews were conducted with youth leaders. Respondents represented 13 countries of Eurasia, including Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, Moldova, and others. Following the interview phase, an online questionnaire was developed based upon the information collected in interviews. Nearly 2,500 evangelical believers from across the FSU completed the questionnaire, and in total, nearly 3,000 people contributed their thoughts through various means. In the final stage, around 150 youth participated in focus groups in Central Asia, and 30 experienced youth leaders participated in a consultation in St. Petersburg, all for the purpose of refining results and gaining further feedback. Material from this project and resulting practical recommendations for leadership formation among evangelicals in Eurasia is presented in detail in four books published in Russian. These books (see right) are also available in PDF format, and can be downloaded at http://www.hodosinstitute.com/publications.

What emerged from the research were the following primary observations:

1. Leadership is in the process of redefinition

When asked the open-ended question – What is leadership? – a majority of respondents answered beginning with: “It is a person whom others follow, or a person who influences others.” The emphasis on a single figure as leader was evident across the research sample, and overall there was a lack of attention to notions such as followership and collaborative leadership. Also notable was a strong emphasis on positional leadership, which leads younger believers to believe that they have no opportunity to exercise leadership without a position of authority.
Language also plays an important role in the redefining of leadership. Often indigenous terms have their own cultural baggage, and borrowing the English term can also be problematic. One youth leader from Kyrgyzstan commented that in the Kyrgyz language, there is no equivalent word to ‘leadership.’ In Russian, the English loan word has been widely adopted (liderstvo), but as in other Eurasian countries, the term often carries a pejorative meaning, conjuring thoughts of autocracy, pride and abuse of power. Some older church leaders reject the term ‘leader,’ saying that they need servants, not leaders.

2. Mentoring and leadership formation are needed and desired among young Christians throughout Eurasia

Most evangelical Christians in Eurasia acknowledge that mentoring is important, but they also note the deficit of established and wise mentoring practices in evangelical communities. Mentoring is often reduced to or substituted with “instruction,” often long lectures or sermons. The younger generation of evangelicals is looking for mentoring that is not reduced to prohibitions, restrictions or dictates from older leaders, but rather mentoring through good examples, relationships of trust, and teamwork. They want to see principles and values lived out in authentic relationships of collaboration.
Respondents also noted that young people are often seen as simply implementers. One youth leader in the study confessed, “We are not forming [young leaders], we use them…and this is a tragedy!” Young people shared that often they hear appeals to serve, minister, take responsibility, etc., yet often the necessary conditions are not in place for their participation.

3. The dramatic socio-political changes following the breakup of the Soviet Union have led to significant generational differences in regards to understandings of leadership

Among respondents the younger generation sees leadership more horizontally, while the older generation is still rooted in a vertical mindset. Paradoxically, however, while young people desire more teamwork and collaboration, they still want a visible, strong leader.
Misunderstanding between generations is also prevalent. For example, while the majority of older generation claimed that young people view leadership as popularity (charisma), less than 1% of younger respondents confirmed this stereotype.

4. Leadership and mission are often disassociated in both theory and practice

The majority of respondents indicated that good Christian leadership practice is needed both inside and outside the church, but they indicated that church-based leadership training is mostly concentrated upon ministry within the church. At the root of this issue is a truncated definition of mission. For example, while young people spend the majority of their time at studies or work, they most often demonstrate leadership only in the church context. Their work or study context is not seen as an arena for Christian leadership, other than simply for evangelism.
For the betterment of mission collaboration and partnership in Eurasia, it is important to note that leadership formation programs, particularly those funded by Western partners, often lack critical evaluation and analysis. Respondents reported that events and resources are funded without sufficient thought given to assessment of effectiveness or appropriateness.
We reiterate that cross-cultural understanding of the phenomenon of leadership is crucial in Christian mission, and further studies are needed, not only in Eurasia. Cultures are never static, and the need for learning is ongoing. As one mission leader has said, “Cross-cultural leadership is a school from which you never graduate.”1 We hope that the results of this study will provide missionaries and leaders with much-needed understanding of the Eurasian context. Moreover, we hope that it will stimulate further study and critical thinking among those involved in missions in Eurasia and Eastern Europe.

Alexei Belov, Jon Coody and Alexander Negrov

For more information on the Hodos Institute, visit http://www.hodosinstitute.com or email anegrov@hodosinstitute.com
Endnote
1. Joshua Bogunjoko, as quoted by James E. Plueddemann in Leading Across Cultures: Effective Ministry and Mission in the Global Church, (Downers Grove: IVP Academic, 2009), 31.

A Missiologist’s look at the future: A missiological manifesto for the 21st century − A Central and Eastern European perspective

December 19, 2017

Roma men worshipping at a conference in Hungary.
Photograph by Ryan Portnoy for The Good Story

Over the next few weeks we will be posting articles from the latest issue of Vista . The first is written by Anne-Marie Kool. Enjoy!

Despite being born in the context of Europe, the academic discipline of missiology, including that of ecumenism and evangelism is currently “in a fragile state of existence.”1

This article seeks to contribute to the ongoing conversation on the state of the church in mission in Europe with a special focus on Central and Eastern Europe reflecting on future perspectives and challenges in six key areas. These themes originate from an analysis of the images of Europe used in the Atlas of Global Christianity.2 It is based on my personal experience of three decades living and working as a missionary and missiologist in the Eastern part of Europe, but keeping in touch with developments elsewhere in Europe and beyond.

My hope is that this manifesto will stimulate critical and constructive discussion and result in “acquiring the posture of a missional church”3 in our European contexts, and a true shift from Western to Global Christianity.

1. Impact of secular values on Church and mission

In Central and Eastern Europe a process of ‘business-ization of mission organisations and churches can be observed, similar to worldwide trends, that are increasingly operating on the basis of business principles instead of theological ones.

Emphasis is more on output and results, value for money, quick results, success stories, quantity instead of quality, than on fruits growing in a hidden way, sacrifice and commitment and on long-term transformation powered by the incarnation in Jesus Christ. Churches have embraced secular values, eroding her credibility and calling leaders to repentance for conforming more to the world than acting as disciples of Christ.4

An additional challenge is the nationalistic fuelled neo-paganism in many countries, a missional encounter denied by some, but considered by others as “the greatest intellectual and practical task” facing the church.5 The question is: do we live in a ‘Christian’, a secularized or a neo-pagan context? These are related to a huge missiological challenge how in our mission and evangelism to relate gospel and culture, seeking to be faithful to the gospel and relevant to the context at the same time. In Eastern Europe these are rather new conversations in the theological discourse.

As Lesslie Newbigin emphasized back in 1962 (sic!), our missionary methods are too much conformed to the world in which we live.6 He states that as we believe in the great tradition of the Reformed Churches, the “ecclesia reformata semper reformanda”, that “reformation is not a thing which is simply done once, but that … the Church must in every generation be ready to bring its tradition afresh under the light of the Word of God”, missions cannot be an exception to that rule.7 We need to look afresh “to our chart and compass and to ask how we now use the new winds and the new tides to carry out our sailing orders.”8 It contains the “costly, but exciting task… of fundamental theological thinking, of Bible study, and of discerning the signs of the times.”9

2. Ecclesiology and mission

In European Christendom, the church has lived for 1500 years in a position of power. Her calling is now to let go of the pre-occupation with power and the confidence of being in control of our life, our environment, and our destiny, so characteristic of modern culture,10 accepting a minority position, and to recover the redemptive power of the Gospel message as defined by the cross. Nothing less than a metanoia of the church is needed, a re-formation,11 with an attitude of waiting on God in deep humility.

Across Eastern Europe, new expressions of church are being sought, but the question is whether the established Christian churches in Europe are willing to surrender their resistance and fear of change, accepting to be transformed into a missional church to impact their own culture as well as serving the rest of the world. In this, non-Western churches have much to teach us.12

At a slightly broader level, letting go of power and control is closely linked to a process of de-Westernization of Christianity. After the changes in 1989 a period of euphoria in “East” “West” partnerships was followed by a period of disillusionment, and now by a search for a contextualized paradigm for mission in Central and Eastern Europe.13 This would imply a new take on partnerships between “South” and “North”, and between “East” and “West”, with a focus on mutual learning to “Walk humbly with the Lord”14 and with the “North” or the “West” to be ready to fulfil – only – a role of facilitator, enabler, in truly equal partnerships, ready to learn from the South, or from Churches in Post-Communist Europe, on their terms! That would give birth to a framework for a real Global Christianity.

3. Issues of otherness and the reconciling role of Churches

One of the burning issues all over Europe is undoubtedly that of “otherness” and exclusion, especially in Eastern Europe with regard to the 10-12 million Roma (Gypsies), but also with regard to e.g. migrants and other minorities.

According to a recent study the stereotyped image of the impoverished gypsies that was created and repeated over the centuries defines the attitude of exclusion of millions of Europeans.15 Stereotyped images also play an important role in the way migrants are depicted. Because of the strong tendencies of exclusion, in the society at large, the emergence of reconciling communities is needed. The role of pastors is to empower their local congregations to grow into open, welcoming, reconciling and missional communities, that embody and radiate the love of Christ to “indigenous”, “strangers” and “minorities” alike. Focusing on the future(s) of Pentecostalism in Europe, Raymond Pfister calls for a “spirituality of reconciliation” to face the challenges brought about by the “damaging effects of cultural and religious clashes”. The work of the Holy Spirit in reconciliation as the reconciling Spirit enables such a reconciling community to come to existence, defining the ministry of the Spirit as a ministry of reconciliation. Pfister observes that God’s reconciling initiative in Christ extends to social reconciliation as well as individual.16

4. Myth and reality of migrants as “outsiders” reaching out to the “insiders” in “reverse mission”

In the Communist period “migrant” African students served as “underground” missionaries in the Eastern European countries, an unknown story that needs to be told! Many African Churches come to Europe in “reverse mission”, like one of the largest Churches in Eastern Europe founded in 1994 by an African, Sunday Adelaja pastor of Embassy of God in Kiev, Ukraine.17 Some seek to reach “insiders” as “outsiders”, some care only for their own ethnic group, some are bringing renewal, but reality is often more complex.

Migration experiences in Central and Eastern Europe differ significantly from those in Western Europe.18 For many countries in the Central and Eastern part of Europe the influx of migrants is a rather new phenomenon, causing similar distancing attitudes based on negative stereotyped images as vis-à-vis the “others”, the Roma, with whom they have co-existed for centuries.19 These attitudes are often fuelled by a lack of adequate information and by historical factors.

The challenge of promoting mutual learning between local and migrant churches starts with deconstructing the stereotyped images of the migrants. Efforts to give migrants a face, by creating informal safe spaces for story-telling, could serve as a first step. The role of theological education in teaching (future) pastors to develop innovative non-formal and informal training programs and to create places for drinking “three cups of tea”20 in their congregations in which both migrants and “indigenous” people participate, is crucial and can help overcoming the wide-spread fear for these “unknown others” that are endangering the future of our “Christian continent”, as the majority belong to a religion, Islam, that has been stereotyped strongly through IS.

In addition, both indigenous and migrant communities face the quest of becoming inclusive communities reaching out to each other and joining hands in meeting each other’s needs, and shaping the missional work of the church.21 The question is how can this be lived out, in mutually strengthening each other, and learning from each other. What theological clarification processes are important in such a local partnership? Which prejudices need to be overcome? Where is repentance and reconciliation needed?

5. The Roma at Europe’s periphery: an unknown “revival”?

The religious landscape of Europe is changing significantly, also with a surprising growth of independent churches. Many of Europe’s “outcasts”, the Roma, belong to the Charismatic-Pentecostal tradition. The Hungarian theologian Ferenc Szűcs stated more than a decade ago that involvement in reaching out to the Roma may have a renewal effect on the church, because it compels the church to reflect on issues of Gospel and Culture. It requires them to reflect on how to translate the Gospel in the mind-set of the Roma, whose culture is so far off from the Reformed Church. He anticipates that this would at least “stir up the dead-waters of our Volkskirche” (civil church), because it is the greatest mission challenge we face. If the churches do not involve themselves, this social bomb is going to go off right in our midst, and the consequences are unforeseeable.22

Collaborative, relevant research is needed to find key Roma local figures that have played and play a role in the growth of Roma Christianity. We need to get to know them, writing up their life story, and honour their lives. Giving Roma Christianity a face, making steps towards getting to know Roma Church history, will not only be beneficial in teaching the Roma Churches, but also to help the majority society to move from image to reality. In this process a key notion should be: Nothing about us without us.

6. Role of missiological education in revitalizing and transforming the Eastern European Churches and societies

The Churches of Eastern Europe are in great need for leaders, who are agents of transformation and innovation and well-equipped to deal with the burning issues of their contexts, like the churches’ response to otherness and exclusion, nationalism and ethnicity, revitalization of the churches into missional communities as well as communicating the Gospel in a relevant way to the de-churched (nominal) and un-churched people and radiating reconciliation in church and society. A renewed focus on developing urban transformational leaders, both pastors and professionals, in the Post-communist context is also needed because of wide-spread corruption, a negative view of work as a shadow of the communist past, and a strong dichotomy between “Sunday” and “the other six days of the week”. It implies for the power of the Gospel to become manifest in urban settings, through the training of professionals to see their work through a theological lens, to connect Christian values to their workplace, as well as empowering and equipping pastors for church planting and church renewal with the urban realities of their large cities taken into consideration.

Jason Ferenczi’s vision for theological education in the FSU is relevant for the whole of Europe, to “develop leaders who can articulate a Christian worldview in the context of extremely pluralistic societies in a way that answers the deep spiritual questions of a highly educated population.”23

In a sense it is not so difficult to state that our missional curriculum must be theologically solid, spiritually sound, face current realities and be contextually relevant, with priority given to dealing with migration issues and ethnic minorities and that we need to stimulate research on mission and evangelism related issues. However, the Eastern European reality and paradox is that the current academic and church climate does not favour allowing space for developing such a curriculum and such research, despite the current challenges of Europe and European Christianity.

In some countries national accrediting agencies would not allow for such space, like in the Czech Republic. In other countries a Christendom paradigm persists, therefore the need for such changes are considered not necessary. In many countries there is a strong gap between mission theory and mission praxis. A dominating pragmatic bias and dominance of quantitative factors in church and mission do not favour the slow and often costly production of contextual textbooks on mission- and evangelism-related topics and the financing of the research needed for it. Translating a book from English is often considered more efficient. That is also true in Central and Eastern Europe. It is much easier to raise funds for short-term projects that are easily quantifiable, for emergency aid or for church-planting projects, with a more or less clear output.

The result is that relatively little is known about dynamic and innovative initiatives in mission and evangelism taking place in the Eastern part of Europe. Those who have the experience, skills and qualifications to research and write up these mission practices to draw out the lessons for the own context, correct the existing images of European Christianity and enrich European and global Christianity, are overloaded in their ministries, and do not have the quality time and no access to the relevant e-resources, that are so easily available in the university libraries in the West.

Therefore, in a situation with “fragile structures” for missiological education, we need to develop innovative structures which facilitate international and interdenominational learning communities and networks, for missiological education and missional formation for people from different backgrounds, including migrants, where different cultural and theological perspectives from Central and Eastern Europe, as well as from around the world are brought together for both the student body and faculty. Safe spaces for this process of acquiring knowledge and facilitating learning processes to take place in Eastern Europe are needed. The Osijek Doctoral Colloquium, initiated last year, seeks to offer such a safe space.

My hope is that a practice of drinking “three cups of coffee” in one of the many coffee places around Central and Eastern Europe with asking questions in relation to the themes offered in this missiological manifesto, will stir up a process that will result in “acquiring the posture of a missional church”24 in our own Central and Eastern European contexts, and in a true shift from Western to Global Christianity by taking away Western philosophy induced hindrances for the advance of the Gospel.

Anne-Marie Kool

Anne-Marie Kool (Hungary/Croatia/Netherlands) is Professor of Missiology and Director of the Osijek Institute for Mission Studies under the responsibility of the Evangelical Theological Seminary in Osijek, Croatia, with a focus on Central and Eastern Europe. She serves as Vice-President of the Central and Eastern European Association for Mission Studies. Since she arrived in Hungary 30 years ago, she has been affiliated with several institutions of higher education, teaching and researching on church and mission related topics and supervising master and doctoral students in post-communist Central and Eastern Europe. Her PhD researched the Hungarian Protestant foreign mission movement. More recently, she has been researching Roma Gypsy (Christian) communities in Central and Eastern Europe.

 

Endnotes
1. Dietrich Werner, “Evangelism in Theological Education in Europe – 12 Considerations from ETE/WCC,” in WCC-consultation on evangelism in theological education and missional formation in Europe, 28-31 October 2012 (Bossey, Switzerland: WCC, 2012).
2. Anne-Marie Kool, “Re-Visiting Mission in Europe through Contemporary Image-Formation: A Missiological Manifesto for the 21st Century,” in Fuller Theological Seminary: 50th Anniversary Celebration and 2015 Missiology Lectures (Pasadena, CA: 2015)
3. George R. Hunsberger, “Acquiring the Posture of a Missionary Church,” in The Church between Gospel and Culture: The Emerging Mission in North America, ed. George R. Hunsberger and Craig Van Gelder (Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 1996).
4. “The Thailand Report on Secularists. Christian Witness to Nominal Christians among Protestants.” Lausanne Occasional Paper nr. 23 2002 (1980).
5. Lesslie Newbigin. Unfinished Agenda: An Updated Autobiography. St. Andrew Press, Edinburgh, 1993.
6. Lesslie Newbigin, “Bringing Our Missionary Methods under the Word of God,” Occasional Bulletin from the Missionary Research Library XIII, no. 11 (1962), 2.
7. Ibid., 1.
8. Ibid., 2.
9. Lesslie Newbigin, One Body, One Gospel, One World (London and New York: International Missionary Council, 1958)., 11, cf. Anne-Marie Kool, “Changing Images in the Formation for Mission: Commission V in Light of Current Challenges. A Western Perspective,” in Edinburgh 1910: Mission Then and Now, ed. Ken Ross (Regnum, Oxford UK; William Carey, Pasadena, CA; SATHRI, Bangalore, India, 2009).
10. John Drane, “Resisting McDonaldization,” in Walk Humbly with the Lord. Church and Mission Engaging Plurality, ed. Viggo Mortenson and Andreas Osterlund Nielsen (Aarhus, Denmark: Eerdmans, 2010), 164-165.
11. Darrell L. Guder, The Continuing Conversion of the Church, ed. Craig van Gelder (Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 2000).
12. Kool, “Changing Images in the Formation for Mission: Commission V in Light of Current Challenges. A Western Perspective,” 174.
13. Anne-Marie Kool. “Revolutions in European Mission: “What Has Been Achieved in 25 Years of Eastern European Mission?”.” In Mission in Central and Eastern Europe: Realities, Perspectives, Trends, edited by Corneliu Constantineanu, Mihai Himcinschi, Anne-Marie Kool and Marcel Măcelaru. Regnum Edinburgh Centenary Series. Oxford: Regnum, 2016.
14. Viggo Mortenson and Andreas Osterlund Nielsen, “Walk Humbly with the Lord. Church and Mission Engaging Plurality,” (Aarhus, Denmark: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 2010).
15. Klaus-Michael Bogdal, “Europe Invents the Gypsies. The Dark Side of Modernity,” Eurozine, no. 24 Feb. 2012 (2012). http://www.eurozine.com/articles/2012-02-24-bogdal-en.html (accessed 23 Sep. 2014).
16. Raymond Pfister, “The Future(s) of Pentecostalism in Europe,” in European Pentecostalism, ed. William K. Kay and Anne E. Dyer, Global Pentecostal and Charismatic Studies (Boston: Brill, 2011).
17. Asamoah-Gyadu, J. Kwabena. “African Initiated Christianity in Eastern Europe: Church of the ‘Embassy of God’ in Ukraine.” International Bulletin of Missionary Research 30:2 (2006): 73-75.
18. See the special issue of Acta Missiologiae 5 (2017) on migration.
19. Some refer to the Roma as migrants, like in Roman Catholic documents dealing with the Roma pastoral care. I do not consider this a correct view, as many of the Roma have been forced to settle quite a while ago.
20. Greg Mortenson emphasized the importance of a relationship-focused approach over and against a project-focused approach. Greg Mortenson and David Oliver Relin, Three Cups of Tea: One Man’s Mission to Fight Terrorism and Build Nations – One School at a Time (New York: Viking, 2006).
21. Kyriaki Avtzki et al., WCC consultation on evangelism in theological education and missional formation in Europe, 28-31 October 2012 (Bossey, Switzerland: WCC, 2012).
22. Ferenc Szűcs, “Az Elmúlt Tiz Év Teológiai Értékelése,” Théma 2:4 (2000).
23. Jason E. Ferenczi, “Theological Education in the Former Soviet Union. Some Recent Developments,” Religion in Eastern Europe 21:6 (2001), 1.
24. George R. Hunsberger, “Acquiring the Posture of a Missionary Church,” in The Church between Gospel and Culture: The Emerging Mission in North America, ed. George R. Hunsberger and Craig Van Gelder (Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 1996).

Mission in Central and Eastern Europe

October 23, 2017

eastern europeSometimes generalisations are made about European mission which are only really true of Western Europe. This edition of Vista seeks to redress this problem by looking specifically at mission in Central and, especially, Eastern Europe.

Anne-Marie Kool’s lead article sets the scene with a ‘Missiological Manifesto for the 21st Century’. She identifies six key areas of interest to Eastern European Christians, including reconciliation, the Roma, ecclesiology, otherness and the role of missiological education.

Daniel Trusiewicz reports back from a recent EBF conference in Georgia, with church planting news from Armenia, Georgia, Moldova and beyond. Jon Coody and colleagues at the Hodos Institute also look at the former Soviet Union, sharing the key findings of their research into leadership and evangelicals there.

Alena Kazlouskaya introduces us to Kolokol (the Bell), a Russian-language newspaper published in Belarus and circulated throughout the former Soviet Union. Kolokol is used as an evangelistic tool and to promote Christian values in prisons, hospitals, and elsewhere.

This edition of Vista concludes with an article by Vladimir Ubeivolc, who explores being a missional church, and practising holistic mission, in the Eastern European context. His article includes case studies from his own experiences in Moldova.

 

Download Vista 28 here

Chris Ducker, Jim Memory, Darrell Jackson and Jo Appleton

Mission in a Network Society

May 20, 2017

Lines Game Characters Networking Network

Paul’s extraordinary success in spreading the gospel among the Gentiles was in no small part due to the network of Christian brothers and sisters who worked with him. Between eighty and ninety people are described as Paul’s co-workers in Acts and the NT letters, depending on how broadly we apply the term. Networking has always been key to Christian mission and is the theme of this edition of Vista.

Chris Ducker’s lead article introduces the theme of networks, provides a review of the types of networks found in today’s globalised world and sets out some of the benefits and dangers of networks for mission. Phill Butler takes this analysis further and considers how networks and their outcomes can be evaluated. He then gives some recommendations for collaborative mission initiatives. And Mark Oxbrow provides a challenge to remember that at the heart of healthy partnerships are relationship-building and shared lives.

Jo Appleton presents the results of our survey of Vista readers and their networks. She sets out the advantages and disadvantages that you identified, and highlights the importance of shared vision and values, leadership and good communication.

This edition of Vista concludes with two case studies. Jaume Llenas and Pedro Tarquís describe the emergence of vibrant media networks in Spain and Katrina Kessler recounts the origins and development of the European Leadership Forum, which enables leaders from across Europe to connect with others in the area of their speciality.

Download Vista 27 here

List of networks and website links