There is rarely a meeting where this phrase is not used and, as one designated a Church Leader I need to hear it and I do.
My immediate response is to think of the many times that I have spoken out, as have others, about a variety of issues. Sometimes this has been reported in the media. Sometimes I have blogged. Sometimes I have spoken at public meetings. Most often I have preached - I hope prophetically where necessary and appropriate. The same is true of other church leaders. Some are reported more often by the media - that is the way of things - but we do speak out.
However, my immediate response could be described as (and possibly is) too defensive.
The challenge is there.
"Church leaders should speak out more."
Speak out about injustice.
Speak out about discrimination.
Speak out about abusive behaviour.
Speak out about war and peace.
Speak out about love.
Speak out about God.
So I will continue to try to speak out more.
I will continue to speak out about all the issues above and others.
I will continue to speak out about them whether they are issues in the wider community or issues in the church. For, make no mistake, there are issues of injustice, discrimination, abuse, war and peace within the church as well as in wider society. The church needs to hear about God too. All of us need to be reminded of our calling as disciples.
All of us need to speak out more.
I will continue to speak out - will you?
"A voice crying in the wilderness
Prepare the way of the Lord"