REPORT OF THE 2011 OCTOBER LEADERSHIP SUMMIT
The University Librarian, Redeemer’s University, Dr. Emmanuel Adebayo has urged Christian publishers and communicators to be mindful of their utterances. It is his position that Christians must endeavour to gets across seasoned utterances at all times. According to him, it is very unlikely to modify people’s behaviour in better ways than in spoken words. Citing James 3:2, the University’s Principal Officer explained that a good Christian is identified through his communication and what he publicizes. Dr. Adebayo made these submissions on Saturday October 15, 2011 while delivering a keynote address entitled “ Christian Publishing, Communication and Creative Evangelism in Nigeria: The Challenges, Progress and Prospects “ at the annual Strategic Ministers’ Summit organized by the Strategic Leadership Academy in conjunction with Scripture Communication Network.
Earlier in his welcome address, the convener of the summit and president of the Academy, Pastor Mark Ighile, drew the attention of the participants to the need for pastors, publishers, writers and communicators to be concerned, more than ever before, about the effectiveness of their tools of operation.
Emmanuel Ifeduba, a communications expert and lecturer in the Redeemer’s University, came up immediately after the keynote address and presented a paper on the “Integrity of the Christian Writer”. According to him, embodied in the functional meaning of integrity are concepts such as : Attitude of Rectitude, Attitude of Exactitude, Attitude of Sacrifice, Life of Service, Attitude of Fortitude, Avoiding platitude, Disseminating moral and decent information, Publishing good success, Avoiding stealing, bribery and extortion, Fulfilling the watchman/watchdog ministry, and Keeping promises. He concluded by urging the present generation of Christian writers to maintain the tradition of integrity that the fathers of faith popularized. In his words: “Let us be guided by the word of God in all our writings”.
In his paper, entitled “God as a Communicator, Pastor Mark Ighile explored the Book of Genesis and posited that the entire world was colourless, shapeless and dark until God spoke. It was the empowered speech of God, according to him, that brought form, shape and light to the world. Also citing 1kings 3:10 and Psalm 45:1 as part of his scriptural framework, Ighile explained that many things go into the packaging of a good speech, and since God is the best communicator, he is always impressed anytime we speak well. The lecturer’s interpretation of Acts18: 24, 26 and 28 brought to the fore the fact that effective communication is as potent as scriptural knowledge. He concluded by advising participants to be sensitive to language use, to watch their pronunciation, to correct themselves on the spot if they know what is right, to develop writing and speaking skills by writing and speaking, to be close to their dictionaries and to keep on updating themselves.
The last presentation styled “The Minister and his Publishing and Communications Ministry” was given by Dr. Michael Adetunji-Prosper, a media and publishing consultant based in Ibadan. His 17-page paper addressed the history of publishing, the various ways of publishing, how to develop writing skills and steps at upgrading capacity in communications. Quite educative were the hints he provided for the writing process. They include listing, which is recording what you think is most important about your topic, brainstorming, which results in a collection of words and phrases scribbled across the page as they come to mind, focused free writing, which entails writing nonstop for five or ten minutes and simply recording ideas that come into the mind at random, interviewing, which is asking appropriate questions from those who know about the subject matter and finally summarizing, which is condensing another writer’s idea and putting them into your own words.
The prayer sessions were coordinated by the Assistant Chaplain of the Redeemer’s University, Pastor Oluseyi Alakija and Fastor Emmanuel Adepoju. The citations of the speakers were read by Stephen Dauda, Kola Bello, Philip Olabisi and David Uzoezina while Revds Ola Oladejo and Ori-Ayo, Kayode Salako, Odunayo Arogundade, Adejimi Folasade, Ademola Adedeji and Meshak Edevo anchored other aspects of the programme. Certificates were presented at the end of the summit.