SciELO - Scientific Electronic Library Online

vol.75 número3Leadership and powerCultural pathways and pitfalls in South Africa: A reflection on moral agency and leadership from a Christian perspective índice de autoresíndice de assuntospesquisa de artigos
Home Pagelista alfabética de periódicos  

Serviços Personalizados



Links relacionados

  • Em processo de indexaçãoCitado por Google
  • Em processo de indexaçãoSimilares em Google



versão On-line ISSN 2304-8557
versão impressa ISSN 0023-270X

Koers (Online) vol.75 no.3 Pretoria  2010


The formation of Christian leaders: A Wesleyan approach


Die vorming van Christenleiers: 'n Wesleyaanse toepassing



W. Bentley

Department of Philosophy & Systematic Theology, University of South Africa, PRETORIA and Glen Methodist, Methodist Church of Southern Africa. E-mail:




The problem of leadership is that it is defined according to a very narrow understanding. It postulates that all people can be divided into two categories. People are either leaders or followers. This article explores the formation of Christian leaders using the model offered by the Wesleyan revival of eigteenth-century England. It asks what leaders would look like when we use the Wesleyan definition instead of the leader-follower understanding to which we have grown accustomed.

Key concepts: accountability,  holiness, leadership, Wesleyan revival


Die probleem met leierskap is dat dit in terme van 'n baie eng definisie verstaan word. Dit stel voor dat alle mense in een van twee kategorieë val. Mense is óf leiers óf volgelinge. Hierdie artikel fokus op die vorming van Christenleiers volgens die model van die agtiende-eeuse Wesleyaanse hernuwing wat in Engeland plaasgevind het. Die vraag word gevra hoe ons leiers sou lyk indien ons, in plaas van die leier-volgelingverstand-houding waaraan ons gewoond geraak het, eerder die Wesley-aanse definisie sou volg.

Kernbegrippe: heiligheid, leierskap, verantwoording, Wesleyaanse hernuwing



Full text available only in PDF format.



List of references

BURNS, J.M. 1982. Leadership. New York: Harper Perennial Modern Classics.         [ Links ]

DE GRUCHY, J. 2004. Political landmarks in the response of churches in South Africa, 1936-1994. Journal of theology for Southern Africa, 118:3-26.         [ Links ]

FORDE, F. 2010. Unrest would kill Madiba if he knew, she says. The Sunday independent: 1, 24 Jan.         [ Links ]

GOOCH, J.O. 2006. John Wesley for the 21st century. Nashville: Upper Room Ministries.         [ Links ]

GREENFIELD, E.A. & MARKS, N.F. 2007. Religious social identity as an explanatory factor for associations between more frequent formal religious participation and psychological well-being. The international journal for the psychology of religion, 17(3):245-259.         [ Links ]

GREENLEAF, R.K. 1977. Servant leadership: a journey into the nature of legitimate power and greatness. New York: Paulist.         [ Links ]

HINDMARSH, A. 1999. Supports or shackles? Methodist structures in the twenty-first century. (In Craske, J. & Marsh, C., eds. Methodism and the future: facing the challenge. London: Cassell. p. 73-87.         [ Links ])

KESSLER, V. 2007. On leadership theory: McGregor's theories X and Y in the light of Christian anthropology. Practical theology in South Africa, 22(2):81-99.         [ Links ]

KRETZSCHMAR, L. 1998. Privatization of the Christian faith: mission, social ethics and the South African baptists. Ghana: Legon. (Theological Study Series.         [ Links ])

KRETZSCHMAR, L. 2002. Authentic Christian leadership and spiritual formation in Africa. Journal of theology for Southern Africa, 113:41 -60.         [ Links ]

LEE, H.J. 1998. Experiencing the Spirit in Wesley and Macarius. (In Maddox, R.L., ed. 1998. Rethinking Wesley's theology for contemporary Methodism. Nashville: Kingswood. p. 197-212.         [ Links ])

LOGAN, J.C. 1998. Offering Christ: Wesleyan evangelism today. (In Maddox, R.L., ed. 1998. Rethinking Wesley's theology for contemporary Methodism. Nashville: Kingswood. p. 113-127.         [ Links ])

MADDOX, R.L. 2003. Formation for Christian leadership: Wesleyan reflections. Summary of proceedings. American Theological Library Association, 57:114-126.         [ Links ]

MCGREGOR, D. 1985. The human side of enterprise: 25th anniversary print. New York: McGraw-Hill.         [ Links ]

MCGREGOR, D. 2000. The human side of enterprise. (In McGregor, D. Revisited: managing the human side of enterprise. Ed. by G. Heil, W. Bennis & McGregor, D. New York: Wiley. p.130-144.         [ Links ])

OUTLER, A.C., ed. 1964. John Wesley: a library of protestant thought. New York: Oxford University Press.         [ Links ]

ROWATT, W.C. & TSANG, J. 2007. The relationship between religious orientation, right-wing authoritarianism and implicit sexual prejudice. The international journal for the psychology of religion, 17(2):99-120.         [ Links ]

SEKOU, O.U. 2007. Gods: toward a contemporary discourse on religion and democracy. Journal of ecumenical studies, 42(1):98-106.         [ Links ]

THOMPSON, E.P. 1968. The making of the English working classes. Harmondsworth: Penguin.         [ Links ]

TYSON, J.R. 2003. John Wesley remembered - any more. Churchman, 117(3):201-214.         [ Links ]

UKWUEGBU, B.O. 2008. Paraenesis, identity-defining norms, or both? Galatians 5:13-6:10 in the light of social identity theory. The Catholic biblical quarterly, 70(3):524-537.         [ Links ]

WATSON, D.L. 1991a. Class leaders: recovering a tradition. Nashville: Discipleship resources.         [ Links ]

WATSON, D.L. 1991b. Forming Christian disciples: the role of covenant discipleship and class leaders in the congregation. London: Epworth.         [ Links ]

WEEMS, L.H. 1999. Leadership in the Wesleyan spirit. Nashville: Abingdon.         [ Links ]

WESLEY, J. 1831. The works of the Rev. John Wesley. Vol. 7. Ed. by T. Jackson. London: Wesleyan Methodist Book Room.         [ Links ]

WESLEY, J. 1993. A plain account of Christian perfection. London: Epworth.         [ Links ]



1 Dr Wessel Bentley is a part-time lecturer in the Department of Philosophy and Systematic Theology at the University of South Africa.

Creative Commons License Todo o conteúdo deste periódico, exceto onde está identificado, está licenciado sob uma Licença Creative Commons