Follow the GLS

The Global Leadership Summit extends into the fall and winter impacting leaders around the world. As the movement is taken across the globe watch videos, pray and see answers to prayer, view pictures, and read stories celebrating what God is doing to encourage, instruct and transform the hearts of Christian leaders around the world.

Feature Stories



An Invitation from Bill Hybels to Join Us

In our wildest dreams…our most fervent prayers…when we first set out to conduct a global version of the Leadership Summit, we could never have imagined that just a few years later we would be celebrating the impact of the GLS in places like China, Egypt and Uganda. I look at the map of countries where we’ve held GLS events and I think “only God!” Only He could ever have envisioned this type of worldwide impact for the Summit.

But I also look at the map and see that some of the poorest regions in the world—countries totally wrecked by poverty and AIDS and corruption—and some of the regions most hostile to the gospel, haven’t been able to access the same level of leadership insight and direction as we’ve all experienced through The Leadership Summit. It strikes me to my core to know that the church leaders in the midst of these conditions—the leaders who just possibly need encouragement and training and resources the most—are left to sort it out themselves. In addition, many leaders who are working diligently in under-resourced areas of the U.S. and Canada are also eager for leadership development, but cannot afford it.

In the same way that the Church is rising to embrace the issues that plague these parts of the world, I believe that now is the time that we must rise to embrace Church leaders who tackle them head-on every day.

Today we’re relying on partners, churches, and other Christian leaders who have a vision for the worldwide church and believe that every leader in every church in every country should be able to tap into the potential that’s unleashed annually at Summit events and through other transformational resources.

I sincerely hope you’ll join the WCA in this vision.

In Christ,
Bill Hybels
Willow Creek Association Chairman of the Board
Senior Pastor, Willow Creek Community Church

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World Changing

The Global Leadership Summit (GLS) is a powerful and potentially world-changing event! The first few weeks of the GLS events are in English speaking regions. During that time, thousands of leaders have their hearts challenged to shatter barriers, to reach across cultural, logistical, and linguistic divides, and to elevate the impact of the church worldwide. After the domestic events, the work of translating the GLS takes place for the International GLS. The international events begin just two short months after the domestic events happen.

At the core of this movement are committed men and women like you, who know how the GLS has benefited you and your church, and see the potential value it holds for like-minded leaders in parts of the world beset by poverty, corruption, persecution, and conflict. As the GLS has expanded to over 75 countries, we’ve seen and heard powerful stories of global impact repeated over and over. Cross-cultural partnerships have been formed. Countries have been opened. Leaders separated by thousands of miles have forged lifelong friendships. Leaders, regardless of their circumstances and callings, have been trained and inspired to more effectively unleash the transformative love of Christ in their communities.Check back here throughout the year as the movement is taken across the globe. Watch videos, pray and see answers to prayer, look at pictures, and read stories that celebrate what God is doing to encourage, instruct and transform the hearts of Christian leaders around the world.
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The impact of the GLS in Egypt

“The GLS brings a recipe of great quality and great passion for each leader who attends. The strife in the Middle East, the strong cultural and religious traditions, and poverty all impact communities and thus Church leaders. Pray that the GLS content would fully address those issues to equip and sustain the Church leaders there. Pray for the safe travel of the leaders, as there are many coming from a distance. But most of all, pray that the Church in Egypt would prevail.”

Fady leads the organizing committee in Egypt. 2008 was the first year for the GLS in Egypt, with a sold-out crowd of 450 delegates. The GLS will be held again in Egypt on December 1st.

Cornerstone of a Region
Egypt has a rich culture and a long history. Egypt is the most populated country in the Middle East and the third in Africa, with over 80 million residents. Egypt is predominantly Muslim (90%) with Christianity practiced by only one percent of the population.Along with a history and regional leadership dating back thousands of years, Egypt faces many challenges, including poverty (20 percent living below the poverty line) and deep cultural traditions that affect life, health, and relationships. They also play a key role in influencing peace with Middle East neighbors. At this confluence of social, religious, political, and historic forces, the need for strong Christian leadership has never been more urgent.
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The Impact of the GLS in Estonia

“I made a commitment that if there was any possibility to help the GLS in Estonia then I would do that gladly. I know that there are so many leaders in Estonia that are in the same situation that I was before the GLS. My hopes and dreams for leaders through the GLS are that leaders would really be transformed.”– Meelis, GLS Partner, Estonia

Small Country…Big Potential
Estonia is home to 1.3 million people. While 92 years old, Estonia has only been independent from Soviet occupation for 19 years. The country is still trying to stabilize its economy, with over 19 percent of Estonians living below the poverty line.

Most of the churches in Estonia are quite small. In the rural communities there aren’t many young people or families, and churches face the challenge of simply surviving. In these churches the pastor is the church team and often feels quite alone. The circumstances are ripe for losing hope. Another leadership challenge is delegation. Church leaders cannot or don’t want to delegate tasks and church development suffers as a result. At the same time, there is great potential for the churches in Estonia, as only around 20 percent of Estonians consider themselves Christians. One recent survey found that only one percent of the population attends church every week.
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Encouragement from a New GLS Partner in Mitimingi, Tanzania

Greetings in Jesus name. The dream has come true!!!! We have all the reasons to thank God for what he has done to make The Global Leadership Summit happen in Tanzania for the first time. It was not an easy job. We must admit that God was on our side. The opposition was very high from outside and more from within. There were many people to discourage rather than to encourage, and many people to curse than to bless.

“We know that all things work together for good for those who love God, to those who are called according to his purpose.”(Romans 8:28)

The Summit took place on Nov, 26 and 27. In this Summit, we had all kinds of leaders from various careers and backgrounds. We had a great time getting together learning and listening from the World-classic faculty. During the session there was a great time for the leaders to share and exchange different experiences and encouraging one another. It was a good time for leaders to get to know one another and to develop new friendship.

People testified on how the conference helped them:
I had an opportunity to speak with one of the great and famous and respected judge from the government. He commented that, he wished all the judges could be in this Summit and get to experience what was going on for those two days. He made a commitment that the next Summit hall would be filled with judges and key people from his work.

One bishop said, “It is amazing for me to sit together with another bishop from different denomination when we consider each other like enemies. Now we sit together and share different experiences.

A professor from a University here said, “If people knew the secret of these teachings, we would have very little conflict and misunderstandings.”

We had an opportunity to allow our hearts to respond from the teachings we were receiving. We prayed and committed to be better leaders so we can transform our work places as well as the whole World in general. People prayed for one another and asked God to unite us and make us one people for the glory of his kingdom. In this training, we had leaders from around the country from all different regions. We also had people from Kenya, Uganda, DRC, and Nigeria who came all the way to attend.

We want to that you very much for your prayer and for all you have done to help and make sure that this event took place. God bless you.

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The impact of the GLS in Kazakhstan

260 people attended the GLS in Kazakhstan in 2010. People traveled to this site from far away cities in this vast country, in some instances selling possessions to pay for the travel costs to be able to attend the GLS. This is our third year in this country, where Christians are in the minority and are faced with a government that is trying to restrict Christian witness.

Their registration office is probably unique among all sites, as you can see in the photo. During the worship time people were deeply engaged. On their faces you can see that they are oppressed, and yet joyful in singing praises to God.

Clash of Old and New
Kazakhstan is a country of 16.2 million people with a relatively stable political and economic structure, but strong authoritarian control. The population is 47 percent Muslim, 44 percent Russian Orthodox, and only two percent Protestant. As a result, the GLS stands in contrast not only to other religions, but also to more traditional denominations. Legally, Christians have freedom, but in some places churches are persecuted and it is very difficult for churches to register with the government. However, Protestant churches in the country are unified and meet together for fasting and praying and events like the GLS.The GLS in Kazakhstan has not escaped governmental regulation unscathed. Recently, the government in Kazakhstan tried to pass a law effectively prohibiting the presence of foreign missionaries in Kazakhstan, and it was under the threat of this law that the GLS in 2008 was very nearly shut down. After an official government inquiry, the GLS was allowed to continue. The leaders there were envisioned and inspired, and the law itself never officially passed.

Prayers for Kazakhstan
“God is at work in Kazakhstan. Be in prayer for the Christian leaders of this country as they have massive obstacles they are up against. Remnants of corrupt communist systems and governmental opposition are just a couple examples of all they have working against them. The GLS exists to build these leaders up so these dedicated men and women can have the leadership tools in their arsenal that they need to bring the Gospel to Kazakhstan.”

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Church at the Crossroads – Nigeria

Nigeria is the eighth largest country in the world, with over 152 million residents. It also has the third highest number of people living with HIV/AIDS, at 2.6 million, and over 70 percent of the population live below the poverty line. Most of the population are of the Muslim faith (50%), with 40 percent professing Christianity.

However, the Christian Church is at a crossroads. Disunity is a pressing concern, and ethics are very low among many Church leaders. Now more than ever, the Nigerian Church needs development events like the GLS to infuse the country with a level of knowledge, training, and integrity and to provide local church leaders with the opportunity to share and act on a common vision for the local church.GLS site expansion continues within countries where leaders are especially hungry for inspiration and leadership training. Nigeria has hosted the GLS for three years with great enthusiasm.

This year, they’re bringing the Summit to more leaders with a goal of sixteen GLS sites. They are taking on the ownership of the cost and responsibility in training the next generation of church leaders and expecting approximately 10,000 leaders to attend. Nigeria’s financial support from the WCA will remain the same as they grow, allowing expansion into countries like Togo, Senegal, and Burkina Faso.

Prayers for Nigeria
“Please pray for the GLS in Nigeria. Pray for denominational unity. In under-resourced areas, there is often huge trouble sourcing equipment to use at the events. Please pray that equipment would be plentiful so the attendees would have a quality experience.Also, pray for the Church leaders of Nigeria. They work against corruption in the government, and poverty and disease in their communities and churches. The Church leaders who attend the GLS have lived and worked in such difficult conditions all their lives, they need their sights lifted to envision all that the Church can be.”

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Poised for Impact – Ghana

Ghana is a country of over 24 million people, and shows great promise as a country where the local church can demonstrate that it is indeed the hope of the world. With over 28 percent of the population below the poverty line, the local church faces tremendous economic and humanitarian challenges. But with nearly 69 percent of the country professing Christianity, the local church also has tremendous opportunity if well-led.

The Ghanaian Church is not without its challenges. Over time, it has turned inward, looking to serve itself rather than local communities. The elevation of personalities over Christ has also been evident. Never has the need and opportunity for strong, biblically-based, inspired, and equipped leaders been so pressing. The freedom is there for the Church to have significant impact. Leaders are needed to step up and lead the Ghanaian Church forward.

Prayers for Ghana
We praise God for the recent openness to share the Gospel experienced in Ghana and the position of influence Ghana is in to effect change in the rest of Africa. The GLS in Ghana is in a strategic position to influence the leaders who then influence the rest of Africa. Pray that this would be so and that the Kingdom of God would be evident in Ghana.”

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