‘I realized that I’ve been thinking too small. Thank you for blowing my mind in good ways! You deepened my theology of work and broadened my thinking as to service, change, and expanding the kingdom. I came back prayerful and ready to expand my outreach and service worldwide.’
This participant speaks on behalf of most who participated in Global Workplace Forum (GWF). The gathering was a blessing to those who participated in many ways.
The purpose of GWF was to accelerate the fulfillment of the Great Commission through workplace ministry. This was done by bringing leaders together from the marketplace and a variety of workplace ministries, some of which have existed for decades, for the first time to connect and begin to collaborate on best practices, new ideas, and even to learn from what has not worked.
Lausanne met or exceeded its objectives for GWF. The planning team hoped to gather 500 to 750 key workplace influencers representing every region of the world; GWF had 848 highly qualified participants from 110 countries, chosen from over 4,300 nominations, including 174 joining online through GWF Virtual. 65%of participants were from the workplace, 34% were women, and 35% were age 40 or under, all of which exceeded the respective goal percentages of >50%, >30%, and >30%.
GWF also resulted in 30 advance papers from issue network Catalysts, 30 workshops and tracks taught by Catalysts and other issue network leaders, and networking opportunities for all 12 regions of the world. As hoped, GWF has led to planning for regional workplace ministry gatherings, including Latin America and East Asia in 2020 and the remaining 10 regions by 2022, to involve additional thought leaders and practitioners.
Not surprisingly, survey responders rated spontaneous meetings at breaks and free times as significant (19%) or very significant (69%). When asked what were ‘the most significant aspects of GWF for you personally’, 64% indicated ‘connecting with participants in my area of interest’. Overall, GWF received high marks from participants, with 88% indicating the gathering met or exceeded their expectations.
Lausanne was able to award 196,550 USD in registration and travel scholarships to 177 participants, an average of 1,110 USD per recipient. The investment of our financial partners helped many who would otherwise not have been able to participate.
But we are far from done. Because of its strategic importance in fulfilling the Great Commission, the Lausanne Movement has made workplace ministry one of its top priorities for decades to come.
Please visit www.lausanne.org/gwf for a more detailed update and summary video of GWF.