News by email Donate


Top Stories

Most Read

Popular Videos

Nicky Gumbel.jpg
Nicky Gumbel.jpg
World News

'We're done with celebrity culture. It's all about Jesus': Nicky Gumbel reveals names of speakers won't be advertised at Leadership Conference

by Premier Journalist

Former leader of London's Holy Trinity Brompton Church, Nicky Gumbel has told attendees of Ekklesia 2023 conference that the names of worship leaders and speakers headlining this year’s Leadership Conference won't be pre-announced in an attempt to combat “celebrity culture”.

So-called “celebrity culture” is often used in Christian circles to refer to the tendency of idolising certain high-profile Christian figures, such as pastors, worship leaders, and authors, as celebrities or influencers.

Many criticise the fact that the focus is mainly on the personality, image, and performance of the church leader rather than on the message of the Gospel or the teachings of Jesus.

“We're done with celebrity culture. It's all about Jesus”, Gumbel told Andy Frost as they spoke about his over thirty years in ministry.

Started in 2012, the Leadership Conference, which is organised by Alpha, has brought well-known church leaders such as Rick Warren, Most Rev Justin Welby, Cardinal Vincent Nicholls and Mike Todd, among others.

Hosted in London’s Royal Albert Hall, the conference gathers thousands of people from across the world.

In the last few years, several church leaders have been blamed for embracing “celebrity culture”. For example, earlier this year, Tim Keller found himself in the centre of controversy after he decided to launch a centre for apologetics in his name.

Some people are accused of having bought into “celebrity culture” for the decision. However, Keller defended the move.

He said: “The name, in my mind, then has two functions: One - Internally, institutions have culture and some think the name will help guide the vision and goal alignment aspirationally.

“Two - it also helps externally with those who are unfamiliar with apologetics quickly associate with what it's trying to do.”

A Monthly Gift Of $11 Makes A World Of Difference

In a world of fake news there’s never been a greater need for quality Christian journalism. Premier’s mission is to provide the Church with the most up to date and relevant news, told from a Christian perspective. But we can’t do it without you.

Unlike many websites we haven't put up a paywall — we want to keep our journalism free at the point of need and as open as we can. Premier’s news output takes a lot of time, money and hard work to produce. No one in the USA is sharing news like we are across radio, magazines and online so please help us to continue that today.

For a monthly gift of $11 or more we’d also be able to send you a free copy of the brand new Premier Bible, a wonderful Anglicised version of the NLT packed with exclusive bonus content, reading plan and resources to help you get the most out of scripture.

Your monthly support will make a world of difference. Thank you.

Support Us
Continue the conversation on our Facebook page

Related Articles

Sign up to our newsletter to stay informed with news from a Christian perspective.

News by email