Leading evangelical John Stott announces retirement

By staff writers
April 26, 2007
Rev Dr John Stott

One of Britain's best known evangelical theologians and spokespeople, a former chaplain to the Queen, has announced that he is to retire.

The Rev Dr John Stott, aged 86, said today that he will formally retire after fulfilling one final speaking engagement at the upcoming Keswick Convention in July 2007.

He will be moving home from his flat in Bridford Mews, London, where he has lived for more than 30 years, to a retirement community for Anglican clergy in the south of England.

A statement said that the move would enable provision to be made more fully for his present and future needs.

Stott is an Anglican clergyman, noted as a leader of the worldwide evangelical movement.

He is famous as one of the principal authors of the Lausanne Covenant - one of the most influential documents in modern evangelical Christianity.

Its particular achievement was creating a definition of Christian mission which included both evangelism (the proclamation of the Gospel message) and social action.

Stott himself has been a progressive voice on social questions and the need to live the Gospel in practice. But he has remained conservative on issues related to sexuality and doctrinal questions like atonement.

He was a key figure in the pivotal Anglican Evangelical congresses in Keele (1967) and Nottingham (1977), and he played a major role in keeping the evangelicals in the Church of England when others - notably the Cavinist thinker Dr Martyn Lloyd Jones was adocating separation.

Ordained in 1945, he became a curate at the Church of All Souls, Langham Place - opposite the BBC. He then became rector of the church in 1950, and remained in that post until 1975.

Some came to refer to him as 'the archbsihop of the evangelicals', an attribution he rejected with good humour. He declined episcopal preferment and continued to take a strong interest in dialogue with students.

Stott founded both the Langham Partnership International (known as John Stott Ministries in the USA) and the London Institute for Contemporary Christianity of which he is now the honorary president.

He has written 50 books, some of which only appear in Korean or Spanish and was appointed a Chaplain to the Queen in 1959.

He received a CBE in the new years honours list, 2006. Among his other lifelong passions has been bird-watching.

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