Lesslie Newbigin

James Edward Lesslie Newbigin was a British theologian, missionary, church leader and bishop. In 1929, James accepted Christ as his savior while he was studying at Queen’s College, Cambridge. He was attracted to the preaching of William Temple and John Raleigh Mott and joined Student Christian Movement (SCM). In one of the SCM gatherings in Stanwick, he experienced the call to ministry.


Birth : 08-12-1909

Death : 30-01-1998

City : New Castle

Country : England

Place of Vision : India.

In 1933, He joined Westminster College, Cambridge for training in the ministry. In July 1936, he was ordained to work as a he married Helen Henderson, and together they set off for mission work in India. He quickly learned Tamil and began his ministry as a village evangelist.

However, he was deeply troubled by competing denominational missions that often resulted in the Christians being segregated based on thier caste. He saw this is as a contradiction to the gospel of reconciliation, and a primary obstacle to missionary work.

Lesslie Newbigin ministry in India

He worked hard to bring unity among the various demintional churches. His efforts led to the formation of the church of South India uniting the Anglican, Congregational, Methodist and Presbyterian denominations. In 1947. he was appointed as Bishop of the Diocese of Madurai. In 1959, james became General Secretary of the International Missionary Council in Geneva and was responsible for its integration with the World Council of Churches.

James was a brilliant write and one of the most influential theologians of his era who strongly advocated Christian unity. He believed that the church was the chosen people of God chosen not merely for God’s blessing but for service as God’s missionary poeple. He sought after unity in the church and advocated for universal progress in the ministry through shared missionary endeavors.

Qualilty rather than quantity was of more concern for james. by the nature of his heart, pastoral work, missionary vision, and the comprehensiveness of his ministry, he was truly a powerful man of God.

Beloved, are you working for the unity among the churches?

Take away from the article

“Lord, Unite us in our ministry for the extension of the universal church. Amen!”

Word pf Prayer

James Edward Lesslie Newbigin

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