Almost 18 months ago, I wrote a piece at the start of the Pulse Leadership Academy with a quote from Archbishop Desmond Tutu saying, ‘Real leaders are not blinded by the trappings of power but recognize their role as servant”. Well here we are at the end the Academy, and my pray remains the same, that hopefully throughout their leadership training they would have understood the importance of recognising their roles as servants, rather than that have somehow gained some official ‘power’.
On Sunday the 7 July, the PLA graduates were brought together for one last time to officially commission them into serving amongst their local communities, peers and families. It was so encouraging to have them all come along to receive their Sweatshirts, a devotional book and a hand written card from Emily Twigg and myself. All their families were invited, not just to support them in going out into the world equipped as leaders, but also to celebrate what they had learnt, to laugh and to pray with them.
Emily, got the young people to each hold a candle at the front, lit them and they shared how all the young people graduating were the ambassadors for the ‘light of the world’ in Jesus. They would know be sharing his light in the darkness of school and tough family’s lives. It was cool to use this imagery and speak this over the lives of the young people.
These leaders have grown hugely since we first meet in March 2017, and it was only noticeable when looking back at the start of the academy to see how young and free-faced they all were. However, what remains important is that myself and the PSALMS team continue to push them into leadership opportunities and roles, as in many ways this is where being a leader starts.
We will be starting another Pulse Leadership Academy again in September, but this time it will be for only 12 months. We will be using some different material, focusing even more on Servant Leadership, and how one of the most fundamental things we can recognise as leaders and teach our young people is to serve first, just like Jesus did. If you know of anyone in years 10-11 who’d like to get involved in the next one, please contact
Nathan Youlton, Strategic Sports Minister, Psalms