Langham Partnership History
Langham Partnership began in 1969 by John Stott and now spans the globe to equip the church with the education and resources required to share the Gospel and disciple believers.
Since our founding, Langham has:
- Supported the PhD studies of more than 300 Langham Scholars in theological doctoral programs currently serving the church in 90+ countries around the world.
- Equipped more than 10,200 pastors and lay leaders to teach God's Word through 228 pastor-training events and 500+ preaching groups in 63 countries.
- Distributed 62,003 biblical books to Majority World colleges, churches, pastors, and publishers in 77 countries and supported 12 indigenous publishers to write and print 26 local language titles.
About Our Founder, John Stott
John Stott (1921-2011) understood that Christians must be transformed by the Gospel in order for the Gospel to transform the world - modelling love, compassion, forgiveness and justice for the poor and oppressed.
For Christians to grow in maturity, they need leaders who believe, teach and live by God's Word - particularly in the global church where church leaders lacked formal training. That's why John Stott founded Langham Partnership in 1969, donating all royalties from his books to support the training of pastors in Africa, Asia, Latin America, and the Middle East.
Langham Trust Founded
John Stott founded the Langham Trust to fund scholarships for young evangelical leaders from the Majority World. Recipients would study at British universities, working toward doctorates in biblical and theological fields and then returning to teach in seminaries in their home countries. John Stott’s aim was to strengthen evangelical theological education around the world by enabling seminaries to have highly qualified teachers who were academically able and committed to the truth of the Bible and the gospel.
The name Langham was taken from All Souls Church, Langham Place, London—the church where John Stott was rector (senior pastor) at the time.
Those who received scholarship funding from the Trust became known as Langham Scholars, a worldwide family that has grown to well over 300. The programme is now known simply as Langham Scholars.
Evangelical Literature Trust Founded
John Stott founded the Evangelical Literature Trust (ELT), to which he assigned all the royalties from his extensive writings in order to provide books for students, pastors and theological libraries in the Majority World. Royalties from John Stott’s books still form a substantial portion of the funds deployed by Langham Literature (as the Evangelical Literature Trust is now known). Many hundreds of seminaries around the world have been able to develop adequate libraries only through decades of assistance from ELT.
Langham in the US, Canada and Australia
In the United States, a group of friends launched the Langham Foundation which later took upon itself the name of John Stott Ministries (JSM). Similar groups were started in Canada and Australia. All of them provided funds for literature (ELT) and scholarships (Langham Trust).
The Evangelical Literature Trust and the Langham Trust were joined as a single charity: the Langham Partnership in the UK and Ireland.
The national organisations in the UK, United States, Canada and Australia (later joined by Hong Kong), decided to work together as a network with common statements of faith, vision, mission, and values. So the Langham Partnership International (LPI) was formed. In the same year, Chris Wright was appointed as International Ministries Director to take over leadership of the overall combined vision and ministry from John Stott.
2002 & 2004
Langham Preaching Begins & PhDs in the Majority World
After John Stott and Chris Wright conducted some biblical preaching training seminars in Latin America, a third Langham programme was added to Scholars and Literature, namely Langham Preaching.
After a wide-ranging survey, the decision was taken to support Langham Scholars doing their PhDs in high-quality doctoral programmes not only in the West but also in the majority world itself.
Langham in New Zealand
Langham Partnership New Zealand was launched through collaboration with Leadership Development International, New Zealand. The combined organisation is known as LeaDev-Langham.
John Stott Passing
John Stott went to be with the Lord. Before his death, he had requested that John Stott Ministries - the then constituent national member of Langham Partnership in the United States - should cease to use his name beyond his death, but rather revert to their original Langham name. The JSM Board made this change to Langham Partnership (USA), with the result that all Langham entities around the world now share the same name.
View the tribute website for more information - JohnStott.org
Increased Management and Leadership
The International Council, recognising the growth of the organisation, authorised an increase in its management and leadership. Chris Wright’s job was split with the appointment of Mark Hunt as Executive Director, while Chris continued in his more ambassadorial and writing role.
Global Capital Growth Campaign
The ongoing strategic plan was synchronised with a global capital growth campaign, aimed not only at seeking to double Langham’s operations over the coming five years but to build sustainability for all three programmes over the next ten years.