Movement Day 2012: Collaborating for the Sake of the City

More than 1,400 ministry and marketplace leaders from 300 cities joined together at the Hilton New York Hotel, NYC, on September 27 to participate in the 3rd annual Movement Day. Attendees came from 362 U.S. cities, 39 U.S. states and nations; 113 Christian ministries and 165 churches. Almost 60 other types of organizations were represented including: marketplace firms, nonprofits, rescue missions, seminaries/colleges and foundations. These leaders came seeking to collaborate on urban ministry and leadership development, to hear from the best Christian thinkers, to study the best models of urban Gospel Movements, and to find new ways to reach and renew metropolitan communities.

“I am extraordinarily grateful for the leaders who gathered this year for Movement Day,” expressed our president Dr. Mac Pier. “The conference grew 40% in attendance from 2011.  This represents an accelerating passion to impact cities where the majority of people now live. We expect broad-scale collaborative efforts to emerge in dozens of cities here and across the globe in the weeks and months ahead.”

As we have been highlighting these past months, the speakers included Dr. Tim Keller, senior pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian Church in New York City; Dr. Ajith Fernando, former national director for Youth for Christ in Sri Lanka; Bob Doll, Senior Advisor for BlackRock in New York City; Dr. Luis Palau, founder of the Luis Palau Association in Portland, Oregon; and Richard Stearns, president of World Vision in Seattle, Washington.

In his plenary session, Tim Keller said something that gets at the heart of Movement Day: “It is vital for us as Christians to collaborate with one another. We must do it because theologically it’s the right thing to do, and because no one person and no single church has all of the gifts.  In order to do the ministry that Christ calls us to do in the world, we need each other.”

Exactly. Well said, Dr. Keller.

Ajith Fernando spoke about another pillar of Movement Day, a heart for the city.  “One of the greatest challenges of today’s mission field is the city.  Work in the city is fraught with discouragement and a need for wisdom. When people who are having similar experiences get together and share ideas, it can charge their batteries, give them strength and create solidarity. It also provides practical tips that will help them stay strong and finish the work. This is why I am so excited about what Movement Day is doing.”

As we continue to hear stories and examples of how Movement Day has sparked Gospel movements in cities around the world we will be sure to share them with you. God is on the move in our cities and we want to share the good news.

Movement Day is catalyzing leadership teams from America’s largest cities to serve their cities more effectively by advancing high-level, city-changing collaborative partnerships. Many thanks to Redeemer City to City, American Bible Society and Cru for hosting and designing the overall congress, along with all of our organizational partners. Movement Day 2013 will be held on Thursday, October 10th. Register now at

Movement Day as a Beginning

Movement Day is a large-scale way to engage leaders and create new opportunities of innovation for Gospel Movements. But it’s not just about Movement Day; our impact starts in the everyday details of life. God calls on us to serve in every aspect of our lives, even, or maybe even especially, in the workplace. As Movement Day gets closer, we wanted to share a few thoughts we’ve gleaned over the summer as we were able to talk with Bob Doll, Tim Keller, and others who will be leading us at Movement Day.

God’s Movement

God doesn’t just move in a church, but in communities, through the workplace, the government, institutions and personal encounters. As a Christian in the workplace, we constantly encounter people who do not have a relationship with God — people pastors cannot reach on a weekly basis.  People listen to us, watch us and form opinions about our faith based on our behavior. God has them in our lives as a detail in His perfect plan for us. Movement Day isn’t just about what we can do, but it’s also learning to see where God is already at work.

God’s Matchmaking

God is constantly in motion, creating new passages for sustaining relationships all the time. If we have eyes to see, God enables new network opportunities and leads people and institutions with similar passions to one another.  We’ve seen it with our own eyes. Through the Movement Day network, people are making a difference. Spending time with people who are united and passionate about the things you are doing is a wonderful and inspiring thing.

God’s Vision

One of the things we learned from all the people we spoke with this summer is that God’s vision is so much bigger than ours. None of these great leaders do things alone, nor could they, since God’s plans force them to trust in something bigger than themselves. As we come to New York City for Movement Day, we are excited to see God using other people at the conference , to help enlarge our vision for what can be done for our cities, in the name of Jesus.


Dr. Mac Pier, President
The New York City Leadership Center

 Movement Day is catalyzing leadership teams from America’s largest cities to serve their cities more effectively by advancing high-level, city-changing collaborative partnerships.  Many thanks to Redeemer City to City, American Bible Society and Cru for hosting and designing the overall congress, along with all of our organizational partners.

Bob Doll on Movement Day

For our final “Join the Movement” call this summer, we spoke with Bob Doll. As one of the world’s leading voices on financial markets, Bob has had many unique opportunities. But through it all he has made it his goal to keep his faith at the forefront. He offered us some unique insights on how he views the relationship between faith, the workplace, and community. Here’s what he had to say.

A Challenging Pleasure

When you are a leader in business, being a disciple of Christ and remaining consistent in your walk can prove to be quite challenging. You are constantly watched and scrutinized. People infer so much by your actions and speech alone. Through it all, God is going to permit challenges to be hurled your way. It is part of His plan, whether the suffering is major or minor. God still loves me through the hard parts, and has His hand on all of his people. I can be thankful for my faith through my challenges. The kind of worker I am today is a direct result of my belief in Christ, and how he integrated my faith and work beliefs. The result of this integration shows up in my speech, behavior, and business credibility. It is a huge pleasure to recognize how your faith becomes a wonderful platform and structure for your work.

Working Responsibly

We are all called by God to fill certain needs of the world.  I personally have had the privilege of being in the investment management business for almost my entire career. In business, you manage not only people, but investments, money, and relations. In the workplace, there is an opportunity for us to speak with people who cannot normally be reached by pastors. All of the areas of business leave doors open for leadership opportunities, to step up and be a light in the business world. As Christians, we have a certain calling in the workplace. Excellence is demanded of us. We are trusted with the responsibility of representing Christ in our work. We need to be excellent at what we do in the market, because we are followers of Jesus, and our actions directly reflect him. Many people in the workplace are living in cities. It is so important that we have a movement in the workplace as disciples of Christ to show cities the kind of impact we are capable of having.

A Realization

I was searching for a program that would allow me to make a difference through Christ with an A-B-C step process. Of course, God had another plan, and He introduced me to The New York City Leadership Center and the Movement Day Congress.  As an investor involved with Movement Day, I automatically look for something that has a high probability of success. By observing the partnerships and changes Movement Day has already brought about in our cities, I can confidently say that this is a successful city awakening movement. God is on the move. He has turbocharged Movement Day, and it has grown beyond anything we could hope for, yet it still continues to grow. Cities are where new things blossom and grow in so many different ways. While this movement may have been started in New York, cities all over the US and even around the world are rising up to participate. To see the engagement and excitement that has been created from all the cities has been a huge motivator for me, and I am eager to see what this year’s congress brings about.

Movement Day is catalyzing leadership teams from America’s largest cities to serve their cities more effectively by advancing high-level, city-changing collaborative partnerships.  Many thanks to Redeemer City to City, American Bible Society and Cru for hosting and designing the overall congress, along with all of our organizational partners.

Luis Palau on Movement Day

For our third “Join the Movement” call this summer, we spoke with Luis Palau, of the Luis Palau Association in Portland, Oregon. Their ministry has brought together leaders, in more than 75 countries, for a new vision of sharing the Gospel by speaking words of truth in a fresh way. They have served the church and the Lord faithfully, and their work is at a global level thanks to the movement of the Holy Spirit. Palau has big aspirations for Movement Day, and was very excited to share some of them. Here were some of his encouragements and hopes.

A Balance of Service

I came to America in 1960 and was immediately so impressed. One thing I noticed was how the secular culture viewed the Christian culture as either a people who weren’t involved at all, or people who are out of control extremists who tend to offend people, even though their intentions were good.  I came to realize people were rejecting the church not because of Christ, but because of the attitudes within the church. My goal is to have the city know what we are for, not what we are against. We need to show others how we can serve, what we stand for, and how we care for them. Movement Day is instrumental in developing these principles.  We need to pray, intercede, and give thanks for those in authority, like Timothy chapter 2 instructs us. Getting involved with a city is our main mission and concept. Our churches earn respect and are gifted with humility when we serve our cities. By using discretion and wisdom from God, we can win people over for Christ by serving them. Movement Day will help us accomplish these things.

Hopes for the Future

As we prepare to come together in deep prayer, church planting and overcoming challenges that lie ahead, I need to recognize that Movement Day is probably the largest and most powerful movement of any city of Bible-believing churches.  God blesses cities that serve in the name of Jesus, and helps city leaders fulfill pressing needs. Those who oppose and disagree with what churches do merely make room for an opportunity to serve. No particular model or structure will be right for each city. We simply must be encouraged through Christ that our work in the church is going to unite us with our cities. Uniting the church and the city is a key step. It will be challenging, but Movement Day is the kind of needed tool and encouragement for this vision.

Encouraging the Urgency

Spiritual reawakening is vital. Our culture seems to be in a period of disintegration, which is a rather urgent situation. However, rather than panic, we must fully commit to an attitude of service. The media catches on when a movement is on a genuine and united track. They respect it and in turn, churches become increasingly encouraged by this. Fellowship, laced with freedom in Christ and the courage of a city, brings service alive and awakens it in the hearts of leaders in both the city and the church. The Holy Spirit then intervenes on God’s time, and works for the city’s good to open doors within it. We do not know what time we have left, of course. What we do know though is that we currently have a terrific window where key leaders are interested in city movements. This creates a sense of urgency for the culture and the people in the city. We need to seize this and unite the efforts to bring about change. Movement Day plays the strategic role of involving dozens of different leaders and brings them together to learn from each other. We may not have an answer to the challenges yet, but God gave us this sense of urgency, and it is helping get things done and bring about His will.

Come and hear fromBob Doll, Ajith Fernando, Timothy Keller, Luis Palau and Richard Stearnsandparticipate in interactive learning tracksin the afternoon focused on various urban issues at Movement Day on Thursday, September 27th . Join us as a broad Christian community gathers in the nation’s largest city, seeking to collaborate with other leaders to transform cities through Gospel Movements.


Dr. Mac Pier, President
The New York City Leadership Center

 Movement Day is catalyzing leadership teams from America’s largest cities to serve their cities more effectively by advancing high-level, city-changing collaborative partnerships.  Many thanks to Redeemer City to City, American Bible Society and Cru for hosting and designing the overall congress, along with all of our organizational partners.

Movement Day: A Catalyst for Connection

For most people, their involvement in Movement Day involved a few key steps in order to better understand how the Holy Spirit is working in city movements. These steps can be used as tools to aid in the preliminary stage of Movement Day. Since the group of leaders coming together is so diverse, these steps can aid in providing the power of the kingdom with all of the individuals and situations within a city. They are important to the relationships that have been brought about, and can only continue to connect stronger through shared visions and passions.

First Connections

Sometimes, in order to see what the Holy Spirit is doing in city movements, a simple invitation is all that’s needed. Roger Rutter, a colleague from Ottawa, has said that being invited to Movement Day, as simple as that seems, was the most important element to him. If Tom White, founder of Frontline Ministries, had never invited him to Movement Day, he never would have been able to connect with North American pastors, something he still finds valuable today. By connecting with leaders from many cities and provinces, we are taking wonderful first steps to see what the Holy Spirit is capable of.

Establishing Relationships

It’s important to notice that Movement Day is not an end, but just a beginning. There is something very important to collaborating and sharing with others as you journey through your ministry, both the ups and the downs. During our “Join the Movement” call with Rutter and White, they talked about the relationships they began at Movement Day with individuals and churches in Ontario, Canada, relationships they still find valuable in their journey.

Centering on God

As we recognize more and more that God is at work and as we rub shoulders with others who want to be involved with what he’s up to, we can begin to embrace our personal responsibilities. Movement Day isn’t just about strategy, it’s about joining with God in what he’s up to in our cities. God shows up at Movement Day, preparing our hearts and teams for the things to be uncovered ahead. He blesses us with understanding and helps us connect with other leaders and churches all over the country. Our relationship with others in the Body of Christ and our relationship with God himself are what help us grow at the core of our values and foundations. And out of these core relationships grow Gospel Movements.

Glenn Smith on Movement Day

For our second “Join the Movement” call, we spoke with Glenn Smith, the executive director of Christian Directions out of Montreal, Canada. Glenn has also done extensive ministry work in Haiti, and caters to Christian liaisons all around the world. Glenn has a serious desire to impact Canadian cities with gospel movements. Here were some of Glenn’s thoughts in preparation for Movement Day…

Brothers across Borders

If anyone told me 29 years ago that I would still be doing this job today, I never would have believed them. Christian Directions is an organization in Montreal that has a vision to aid in the spiritual transformation of cities. Working in Montreal has taught me that cities are a perfect place to begin a transformation through conservative actions of committed Christians. When people across borders start taking their cities seriously, communities and ministries with other large cities flourish. I can see a testament of this as we continue to strengthen our relationships with our neighboring country’s cities. Movement Day gives those of us in Canada a unique opportunity to connect with our American brothers and sisters in this way. The experience of bringing our cities together to transform together is a unique and wonderful opportunity. I am excited to grow with others in the United States and use it as an opportunity to advance the Gospel all over the world.

Canadian Challenges

Movement Day tackles the bigger issues regarding the church invading the cities. I want my city to connect with urban American ones so that they may transform together. One of our commitments is to diversity, and the reconciliation to a range of diversities. Montreal is unique in this way, because we connect with a French-speaking demographic.  This Movement Day is a very unique opportunity, because it allows the church to penetrate into different areas, such as integration.

Networking is Important

I have learned a lot from cities that are poor and structurally deficient. As I have been going back and forth to Haiti since 1979, I have learned so much from the cities and community there. After the catastrophic earthquake there, the thing that worked to bring people back together was the established networks. By establishing networks here in our city of Montreal with cities in the United States, I can only hope our cities can transform together into a stronger community as the networks are established. I believe these are all things that occur through Movement Day. Connections are made, kept, and strengthened.