A few years ago, when thinking about the focus of another urban program, we came up with the following: that there was a great need to “create a new generation of leaders for a world that has become increasingly more urban, more global and more culturally diverse.” Biblically, as many of you know, perhaps the most significant verse in scripture for me comes from the book of Jeremiah in the Old Testament. There, Jeremiah exhorted the exiles, who found themselves in pagan Babylon, not to flee or revolt, but to “seek the peace of the city, and pray to the Lord on its behalf, for in its peace, one would find their peace” as well.
In a world rife with conflict, tension and danger, we desperately need such leadership. We need those who can navigate cities, can make connections globally and
will “stand in the gap” between cultures, and between differences of race, class, nationality, gender, ethnicity and religion.
Earlier: Gideon Strauss on six principles of Christian cultural engagement