September 15, 2006
Dallas, TX – Top leaders from eight denominations met for a one day gathering to discuss the need for a coordinated and unified effort among them surrounding their common heritage and commitment to the Holiness message. The outcome of the gathering was the creation of the Wesleyan Holiness Consortium. The Consortium will be working cooperatively to multiply efforts already started and piloted in the Southern California area among these churches over the past three years.
Denominations participating in this first meeting included the Church of the Nazarene, Brethren in Christ, Church of God in Christ, Free Methodist, Salvation Army, Christian & Missionary Alliance, Church of God (Anderson), and Wesleyan. Others who expressed desire to participate but whose leaders were unable to attend included the International Pentecostal Holiness, Foursquare, Shield of Faith, and Worldwide Church of God.
Over the past three years these denominations have funded and cooperated in the Wesleyan Holiness Study Project, a gathering of 30-40 scholar/leaders who recently released the result of their work in the Holiness Manifesto. A book is forthcoming that captures the work of the Project in more comprehensive writing as a tool for pastors and lay leaders. The Manifesto has already been used in these various denominations as a training tool and convening document to call the pastors to a heightened commitment to the message of Holiness in the 21st Century.
The formation of the Wesleyan Holiness Consortium takes the effort to a new level of cooperation. In its formative meeting the leaders committed to plan and conduct three efforts in the coming 12 months:
1. The Wesleyan Holiness Study Project will continue as a means to provide ongoing theological dialogue among the churches regarding the message of holiness;
2. A Wesleyan Holiness Young Leaders Hangout in August of 2007, in Dallas to glean input and engagement of the young generation of leaders in carrying the holiness message forward in the new century;
3. A Wesleyan Holiness Pastors’ Day will be developed in a second city to replicate the already successful Pastors’ Day conducted in Southern California over the two previous years.
By these three projects the Wesleyan Holiness Consortium hopes to expand the growing interest in relevant articulation of the holiness message to other regions. These particular emphases are designed to keep the deep theological dialogue connected to the practical application through leaders and local churches.
The Wesleyan Holiness Consortium Leaders will be meeting again on September 14, 2007 to review the effect of their efforts and to consider the next steps together.
For further information contact:
Kevin W. Mannoia
Azusa Pacific University