Jay Smith has worked with Muslims since 1983. He has two masters’ degrees and will complete his PhD in Islamics and Polemics by the summer of 2015. Jay is one of Christianity’s principal public evangelists and debaters to the Muslim world. He travels extensively teaching Apologetics for those exploring ministry to Muslims and engages the movers and thinkers of Islam on a weekly basis. He is the founding member of the Hyde Park Christian Fellowship, a weekly evangelism ministry to Muslims in London’s public places, as well as a co-founder for the Pfander Centre for Apologetics.
Paul Sydnor is the EU Director for the International Association for Refugees (www.iafr.org). An active participant of the Refugee Highway Partnership (RHP) in Europe, as well as the Lausanne Global Diaspora Network (GDN), Paul has helped to build church-based ministries among refugees and asylum seekers throughout Europe since 1985. He has also come alongside of a number of refugee leaders over the years to strengthen and support them in their own efforts, including refugee leaders from Croatia, Kosovo, Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria and several parts of Africa. Paul and his family live in Lille, France. His wife is from Germany, and they have raised their three grown kids raised in three different countries. Paul has completed the MDiv and MA Counseling (Gordon-Conwell) and recently a PhD (Middlesex) about the intersection of forced displacement and faith.
Sebastian Vaduva currently serves as Dean of the Griffiths School of Management within Emanuel University of Oradea, Romania. He was born and raised in Romania, but in the spring of 1989 immigrated to the US with his whole family. In the US he enjoyed a successful career in entrepreneurship, academia, and the NGO sector. In 2003 he completed his first PhD in the area of comparative entrepreneurial systems between the US and Romania. In 2004 he was selected as a Fulbright scholar for the nation of Moldova where he worked as an MBA program director. In 2005 he returned to Romania permanently and besides being Dean of the Griffiths School of Management he is a serial entrepreneur with seven started companies and a corporate trainer/consultant for multinational corporations present in Romania. Additionally, Sebastian is involved in politics and public administration holding a second PhD from the National School of Politics and Public Administration. He has consulted a number of public leaders on the subject of economic development, FDI attraction, job creation, etc. In 2014 he joined the board of Transparency International Romania in an effort to educate the Romanian public on the perils of corruption and the benefits and possibilities of a healthy business environment. He is married with Lois and together they have a daughter Evelina Delia.
The State in God's Purposes
The state is an institution we confront in many areas of our lives, even without knowing it. It has great power and extensive authority over us, but we rarely spend much time thinking about what it is or why it exists. How should Christians understand the state from a biblical and theological point of view? What are its legitimate purposes under God? What are the limits of its authority, and how should we respond when it violates those limits? How should Christians advance their views of the state in a religiously plural society? Is there any place for a ‘Christian state’ or ‘Christian nation’?
In the World, But Not of the World: The Problems of Corruption and Broken Economies
Jesus called his disciples to be the salt and light of the earth, but does that include the political and administrative sphere? Politicians and public administrators can tend to become corrupted, especially in broken economies with legacies of atheism and communism. Kleptocracy and cronyism seem to be the norm rather than the exception. But were the Egyptian, Babylonian and Roman Empires any less corrupt in the times of Joseph, Daniel and the saints in Caesar’s household? If God called them to minister in those harsh and corrupt realities, surely He must have a plan for the 21st century Christian leaders of Europe! In his talk, Sebastian Vaduva will outline the intrinsic problems of corruption within the context of post-Soviet Eastern Europe and the secular European Union. Based upon his experience and research he will attempt to provide practical, biblical solutions on how Christian leaders can be salt and light in Europe.
How to Mount a Successful Political Campaign for Human Life
Parliamentary victories in all fields are often long fought and hard earned. Grassroots campaigns that combine expert research with personal stories and strategic government lobbying can have a significant bearing on the outcome of the legislative process. The same is true for any campaign that fights for life in parliament as recently seen in the UK by the defeat of the Assisted Dying (No.2) Bill by 330 – 188 votes in the UK’s House of Commons. Fiona Bruce MP, Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Pro Life Group, leader of the opposition to this piece of legislation, will share her reflections on the defeat of such a Bill and the various elements that contributed to its defeat.
What Should the Church's Response Be to Protecting Human Life?
There is mounting evidence that our secular society’s disregard for the value of human life has wrought unspeakable tragedy. Since respect for human life is based on recognising God as the Creator and humankind as created in His likeness, any nation that abandons God will abandon respect for His creation and fail to recognise the innate value of each human being created in His image. Unfortunately, confusion regarding the origin of humanity is not confined to the secular culture. Even as Christians, we fail to comprehend the value of every human life because we cease to look at each other with awe as breathtaking creatures embodying a touch of the Creator Himself. How can we as believers restore a godly view of human life? What are some effective tools and strategies to equip Christians and teach the next generation the truth from a biblical worldview? How can the Church both affirm and help protect human life?
Europe's Refugees and Migrants: A Christian Response
The first half of the 2010 decade has seen a resurgence in refugees and migrants crossing from North Africa and the Near East into Europe. Driven by factors such as war, conflict, prejudice and poverty, refugees and migrants have been flooding Europe's borders. What is the story on the ground and how can Christians respond in a balanced way that reflects God's love for the widow, the orphan and the stranger.
Panel Discussion on Europe's Refugees and Migrants
Johannes de Jong, Charlie Hoare, Jay Smith, and Paul Sydnor
Kingdom versus Tribe
Speaker To Be Announced
Where Do We Go From Here? Painting a Better Picture
There is no area in the realm of politics and society into which our Christian faith does not speak. Across this Network participants have grappled with considerable issues of our day and sought to understand how we as Christians can best stand for the Lord and help His Church shine as a light for hope and truth. This session will bring together the key points that have emerged from across the four days with opportunities for participants to express their take-home points.