The International Summit on Children at Risk

We are at an unprecedented time in history as the Global Church rises up to seriously address the importance of children, especially children at risk. Major developments in the Global Church community in the past several years demonstrate a new commitment to mission to, for and with children. The 2010 Lausanne Cape Town Commitment (also called CTC) includes a Call to Action on behalf of Children. In the nearly forty year history of the Lausanne Movement, the CTC is the first Lausanne document that calls on the Church to esteem the value of children and youths in the plan and mission of God. In addition, some of the most flourishing and thriving movements and networks of the Global Church are speaking and working collaboratively on behalf of children.

Picture – Risk can occur everywhere, but in a ‘planet of slums’ the child is often very vulnerable

These and other movements and initiatives in diverse sectors are creating awareness of the overwhelming issues of poverty and preventable illness afflicting children, epidemic proportions of child abuse, and widespread exploitation. Thus, the emergence of the Lausanne Call to Action on behalf of Children at Risk, coupled with the flourishing work of key international movements, confirm that now is the time to act. Lausanne leaders and the key players of these global movements need to engage in productive dialogue and build upon synergistic energy to push for concrete and practical actions to address the issues affecting children at risk around the world.

Even major secular organisations such as UNICEF acknowledge the critical role of the Church on needy and vulnerable children. It is imperative that the Church be salt and light by leading the global and biblical charge to demonstrate the love of Christ through effective, holistic, and transformational mission to and with the least of these – the children.

The Lausanne Consultation on Children at Risk is designed to raise awareness of the needs and initiatives noted above, and to engage sustained, collaborative actions within the Global Church community to fulfil the Cape Town Commitment Call to Action on behalf of children at risk. A major output of the consultation will be the production of the Lausanne Occasional Paper (LOP) on Ministry with Children-at-Risk and a Conference Declaration.

Objectives of the Consultation
• Submit a report of the key theological and missiological reflections related to children at risk;
• Describe practical ministry models that demonstrate praxis based on sound child development practice and theological reflection;
• Outline broad action plans involving multi-movement collaboration among Lausanne issue groups and global networks; and
• Gather the commitments and affirmations of participating leaders to move the global Church forward in seeing God’s purpose for fulfilled and realised for children at risk around the world.

We will bring you further news on this consultation as the event and it’s outcomes unfold.