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Liminal Leadership Conference 2017: Transforming Leaders for a Changing World

  • Course Dates: Mon 25 September 2017, 1:00 pm to Fri 29 September 2017, 4:30 pm

‘Liminal’ and ‘leadership’ combined offer an intriguing paradox.

Leadership is about knowing where you are going, how to get there and how to inspire people to follow. Liminal on the other hand is about not knowing, about having left a familiar state and role before discovering a new one. It is about uncomfortable transition which has the potential to be transforming.

Liminal leadership picks up some key themes from the Hebrew and Christian scriptures. Moses was the leader for the fertile Promised Land, but led the people through the barren and dangerous desert. Isaiah had a vision of a return to Jerusalem while he was in exile. Jesus discovered his vocation in the desert as well, and knew the anguish of Gethsemane.

This conference starts from a position that all good leadership is as much about not knowing as it is about understanding, and as much about waiting as it is about forging ahead.

Liminal Leadership is a working conference, built on some of the innovative ideas developed by the Grubb Institute over more than thirty years, uses a number of methods to bring to focus on:

  • the world in which we live and the myriad of rapidly changing contexts in which we have to lead;
  • the organisations in which we work, whether they be churches or charities or corporates, as a set of interlocking systems;
  • the person who seeks to lead and influence those around them, bringing to bear experience and wisdom;
  • engagement with unconscious forces and factors in ourselves and the systems we work in with a view to harnessing them well for leadership;
  • discernment of the living God and God’s purposes for creation.

Holding all these five foci together the conference provides spaces to explore and reflect in depth on the experience of seeking to work and lead faithfully. We use whole group events, small group work, teaching, role analysis and plenary discussions set in a rhythm of prayer and worship. Crucially, we offer frames and paradigms that come from the world of the unconscious and systems thinking to make new sense of our experience. We find ways of understanding what is going on in our organisations and churches by becoming aware of what is going on inside us – our thought and feelings and hunches. This conference will focus on applying these ideas to lived experience and real-life situations and dilemmas. It will provide you with an opportunity to stand back from your day to day leadership, offer some clear structures and models for you to think about and adapt to your context. It will build your capacity to take wiser decisions and make better interventions.

Who is this Conference For?

The conference is for all those lay people and clergy who exercise leadership in church, charity, educational and commercial business settings. It is also developmental for those who act as trainers and coaches.

The conference is especially for those exercising leadership in the midst of a rapidly changing world and, in the Church increasingly diverse roles and models of ministry e.g. pioneer ministry, chaplaincy, Fresh Expressions, the “New Monastic” Movement, Self Supporting Ministry etc.

Conference Aim

“To discover ways to transform my leadership roles in the Church and world, so that we can all respond more authentically to God’s call.”

Conference Staff

Nigel Rooms (Conference Leader) works part-time as the Leader of Partnership for Missional Church UK for the Church Mission Society and takes up a variety of freelance roles. He was formerly the Director of Ministry and Mission in the Diocese of Southwell & Nottingham and a mission partner in Tanzania. He is the author of The Faith of the English: Integrating Christ and Culture, SPCK.

Rosy Fairhurst (Conference Associate Leader) is Canon Chancellor, Leicester Cathedral and formerly Organisational Analyst, The Grubb Institute, priest at St Martin-in-the-Fields and Director of Mission and Ministry at Ripon College Cuddesdon. She is the author of Uncovering Sin, SPCK and co-author of the report Spiritual Capital: The Present and Future of English Cathedrals.

Keith Lamdin (Conference Associate Leader) is Principal emeritus, Sarum College, Salisbury and formerly Director of Training, Oxford Diocese. He is the author of Finding your Leadership Style: A Guide for Ministers, SPCK and Supporting New Leaders in the Local Church – A Handbook, SPCK, with David Tilley.

Additions to the staff team will be made in due course.

Conference Booking Information

This conference takes place at the Wilson Carlile Centre in Sheffield. The conference fee is £790 which includes full board and conference expenses. The conference begins with arrivals for lunch at 1pm on Monday 25 September and concludes at 4.30pm on Friday 29 September 2017.

Please note that this conference has now been cancelled. Contact Alison Ogden for all enquiries.
aogden@sarum.ac.uk  |  01722 424826  |  01722 424800 (main reception)

Course Details

Mon 25 September 2017, 1:00 pm
Fri 29 September 2017, 4:30 pm
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Nigel Rooms (Conference Leader); Rosy Fairhurst (Conference Associate Leader) and Keith Lamdin (Conference Associate Leader). Additions to the staff team will be made in due course.
Please Note:
This conference has now been cancelled. Please contact Alison Ogden for all enquiries.
Course Price:
£790, includes full board and conference expenses