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Frequently Asked Questions

We are committed to serving others with integrity within their needs and interest, and three key policies undergird how we do this

What do you mean by ‘leaders’?

When we say we serve ‘leaders’, we mean anyone in a recognised leadership role in a church or Christian organisation that involves spiritual leadership of others. By ‘spiritual leadership’, we mean responsibility for the growth of others in discipleship (e.g., involving teaching, pastoral care or mentoring relationships) as opposed to leadership roles that are purely administrative or managerial.

We serve anyone who is in a position of leadership in a church or Christian organisation (including mission agencies and Christian charities) and also the spouses of such people. We serve men and women, single or married, of different ethnicities and cultures across denominations, traditions and networks. Terminology varies across churches, so it’s hard for us to list every kind of leader we would welcome to our activities, but where you read ‘leader’ without additional qualifications, we include:

  • leaders of churches, including ministers/pastors/rectors and assistant ministers/ministers in training/curates.

  • leaders in mission agencies and other Christian organisations

  • other people paid to be in ministry, lay leaders, tentmakers and bivocational workers. 

  • elders and deacons (or equivalents) who have responsibility for spiritual leadership.

  • people leading specific ministry areas, including youth and women’s workers, children’s ministers and pastoral care workers. 


Some of our activities are aimed at a narrower group of leaders or are only for spouses of leaders. If that’s the case, it should be clear in the name or description of the activity. If, however, we say “all leaders” or “anyone in leadership”, we mean just that. And if you’re in doubt if a programme is for you, please contact us.

How is the work of Living Leadership paid for?

Mostly through donations.

Living Leadership is a collaborative network of people, most of whom serve in our name voluntarily. We do have a smaller team of ministry staff and support staff, who are salaried. Salaries and related costs are the biggest cost for the ministry, but we also rent an office in Nottingham (the rest of our staff work from home) and we have to cover the costs of doing ministry. Much of what we do, we offer free of charge to people in need of support. Some of our services (e.g., Formation courses, Pastoral Refreshment Conferences and premium resources) are paid for by those who receive them, but, in these cases, we usually aim to cover immediate costs of the activity and income seldom even contributes to the cost of associated staff time. 

So, we depend to a large degree on donations to cover the costs of our small staff team and expenses for our larger network of Associates. We get some support from grant-making trusts and some individuals donate regularly. If you share our vision of seeing leaders and their families living joyfully in Christ and serving us faithfully, please consider partnering with us in it by making a one-off donation or giving monthly.

Do I have to agree with your Statement of Faith to come to your activities?


You are welcome to our activities whatever your theological beliefs. You should, however, expect what you hear and see in our programmes to reflect our beliefs and values.

Our Statement of Faith is vital for us. It unites our Network of ministry staff, Associates and Affiliates. It describes the kind of things you will hear us teaching about and it underpins everything we do. 

In some activities we do have a set of Guidelines for participants, which state the values we expect people to adhere to when they participate (e.g., maintaining confidentiality when others share personal details). 

Where does Living Leadership sit on the Evangelical spectrum?

We like to think we are ‘centrist’ Evangelicals. For us, that means that we hold firmly to the things described in our Statement of Faith and also to historic biblical beliefs about gender and sexuality, but that we reach out warmly in all directions to partner with others who share those convictions.

Around the convictions we share, members of our Network hold diverse views on many other matters such as the role of women, the end times, Charismatic gifts, baptism and church polity. It’s not that we don’t care about those things or that we’ll never speak about them, but that we believe what unites us is enough to create a space where we can serve leaders and their families well. We have no agenda to push you in any direction on those matters. Our only agenda is to help you live joyfully in Christ and serve him faithfully.

So, whatever ‘tribe’ or part of the evangelical spectrum you identify with, we will welcome you and seek to help you within your needs and priorities, not ours.

Do you serve leaders in my denomination or network?

Hopefully so!

We serve across many denominations, so there’s a strong possibility that someone in your denomination or network is already receiving some of our services. If not, there’s no reason you could not be the first. Our heart is to serve anyone who carries responsibility for Christian spiritual leadership of others, whether in a church or Christian organisation.

What is the Living Leadership Network?

The people who provide our services.

The Network consists of our ministry staff, some of our ministry support staff, Associates, Affiliates and key volunteers with ministry responsibilities. The Network meets monthly online and once per year for our Gathering. 

It is not to be confused with the wider group of people, churches and organisations who access our services regularly, including through Refresh Network Online. We have no desire to form a network of churches affiliated with Living Leadership. We exist to support leaders, churches and organisations alongside their existing structures, not to oversee them or interfere in their governance. 

What is an Associate?

Associates are people in the UK and Ireland of proven Christian character and significant ministry experience who provide services in the name of Living Leadership. Each Associate has a personal agreement with Living Leadership outlining the services they can provide in our name. Associates are not paid by Living Leadership. We provide them with resources, advice and mutual support and ongoing development within our Network.

All Associates indicate on an annual basis their adherence to our Network Commitments and commitment to work within our Code of Conduct for Interpersonal Ministry.

What is an Affiliate?

Affiliates are people in European countries outside the UK and Ireland of proven Christian character and significant ministry experience who support leaders in their context. They do not work in the name of Living Leadership, but we offer them advice and support within our Network as well as access to all the resources we provide to our ministry staff and Associates.

All Affiliates indicate on an annual basis their adherence to our Network Commitments and commitment to work within our Code of Conduct for Interpersonal Ministry.

How do I become an Associate or Affiliate with Living Leadership?

Application to become an Associate or Affiliate is by invitation of Living Leadership’s Senior Management Team. 

If you feel that you would be suitable to be an Associate or Affiliate, please contact us and we’d be happy to chat to you. It would be helpful if you tell us in your initial contact a little about your experience in ministry, and especially in supporting or training other leaders. 

If you know someone else who you think would make a good Associate or Affiliate, please put them in touch with us!

Do you offer pastoral supervision?

We don’t describe our services as ‘pastoral supervision’ and we don’t provide the kind of formal accountability and reporting people who need pastoral supervision are usually expected to have.

However, the mentoring we offer to leaders is like pastoral supervision in many ways, since it encourages them to reflect on experiences and to develop wisdom in their practice. So, if you are being asked by a denomination or organisation to find ‘pastoral supervision’ you might want to ask if our services would qualify. We’d be happy to hear from anyone who needs clarification of what we offer to help them decide.

Do you help churches experiencing difficulties?

We don’t offer to come into churches as troubleshooters or mediators in conflict situations and we will not interfere in the governance of a church or organisation. 

We can, however, help with many other issues affecting your church. Some of our Associates and ministry staff members are skilled at helping church leadership teams with various questions and challenges. Some can also walk with a leader or leadership team for a period of time to help them with a process of church revitalisation. And we always aim to tailor what we offer to your needs. So, contact us and let us know what you are looking for and we’ll let you know if we think we can help.

We also have a range of toolkits for various situations, Ministry Masterclasses on specific ministry transitions and Codes of Best Practice in Leader Care and Leader Conduct available. 

Do you help victims of abusive or toxic leadership?

Whilst we care deeply about people who have experienced harm from a leader, we cannot offer direct personal support to them. Nor do we conduct investigations into alleged leadership malpractice.

Our focus is on helping prevent leadership abuses by training, supporting and challenging leaders and helping churches and Christian organisations to have good practices in place.

Are spouses of leaders welcome at all your Refresh activities?

Yes, unless the programme information specifically excludes them.

We encourage married leaders to come to Refresh activities with their spouse if they can, including Pastoral Refreshment Conferences, Refresh Network Online, and Refreshment Days. These activities aim to encourage to those who come to lead from a place of joy in Christ. That’s often refreshing for spouses as well as leaders and many couples find it helpful to be able to reflect together on what they’ve heard. Of course, we know some spouses can’t come to these activities because of other commitments, so we also have a Refresh Community for Spouses.

Spouses may also be welcome at some of our Formation programmes. Their focus, however, is on training, so spouses may be less likely to find them relevant. If your spouse would like to join you in a Formation activity, please contact us directly and we will advise you. 

Are your Pastoral Refreshment Conferences and Refreshment Days only for couples?


These are not couples’ events. Couples are welcome, and married leaders are encouraged to come with their spouses if possible, but these events are also for single leaders and married leaders whose spouses cannot accompany them. 

What happens if we donate less than the ‘suggested donation’ amount for a service?

When we give a ‘suggested donation’ amount, we mean just that – you will get exactly the same benefits if you or your church gives less or more than this amount. Basically, we don’t want churches and leaders to miss out because they would struggle to afford a donation.

Why does the Leadership Commitments Scheme ask for a donation?

We want to encourage churches and Christian organisations to commit to caring well for their leaders and leaders to commit to serving their churches faithfully. We think that donating annually is a good way to show that commitment and it helps us to be able to maintain and develop the resources available to churches to help them work towards those goals.

Do we have to put the badge on our website if we join the Leadership Commitments Scheme?


Displaying the badge is optional. We offer it as a helpful way to indicate that you take leader care and conduct seriously. 

Is Living Leadership egalitarian or complementarian?

Neither and both.

Within our Network we have people who would identify with both of those positions on the role of women in leadership in the church and some who wouldn’t adopt either label. As an organisation, Living Leadership does not have a position on which roles in church leadership are open to women.

Whatever the individual’s view, however, we are all committed to serving all leaders (male or female) in whatever position within the needs of the leader seeking our help. We will not interfere in your church or organisational governance. We will simply seek to encourage you to live in the joy of Christ and to serve him faithfully, respecting your conscience about the role you believe he has called you to serve him in.

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