On Friday 9 December we had an afternoon meeting and dinner with politicians in Tirana. On Saturday 10 December we had a follow up meeting with many attendees of the Summer school in Vlore.
Many of Friday’s participants and several other sympathizing Christians in Albania are involved in ministering to government officials and leading politicians in the country. SGP representatives in the past have also made contact with several politicians and have organized an afternoon conference followed by dinner last year. Therefore we organized this event again.
Politicians and other high level persons like professors were invited to come and hear from the SGP representatives on the validity of the Christian faith in becoming an effective politician, as well as a clear presentation of the Gospel message as the power of God to save lives and transform hearts. Albanian Christian politicians also shared their testimonies. The theme of Friday’s seminar was ‘Politics in Christian perspective’.
A first lecture was held by Mr. Leen van der Waal and the title was ‘Chances and pitfalls of a democratic system’. It dealt with the imperfection of persons and the democratic system and also on the general recognized beneficial meaning of the classical Christian values for the whole community and society. This lecture reflected a Christian vision, but with a strong appeal to others to take these beneficial Christian values on board.
A second lecture from Drs. Wim van Duijn ‘The Christian politician and his mission’ was more practical and showed how a Christian politician in a non-Christian environment can function, and how to respect other politicians with a different and opposite ideological thinking. An ingredient of this lecture was on how to stick to your election programme and promises to the voters and in doing this to try to establish confidence between you and your voters.
In the Saturday lecture and discussion led by Drs. Henk Jan van Schothorst was included how we could evolve and institutionalization the network into a movement (and later may be into a political party). Elements in this discussion were of how a programme is written, what is the position and relation from party members to the representing members of elective bodies, how is the party managed, etc.
In both of the meetings around thirty people participated. Dr. Wybren Jongsma wrapped the seminars up with the positive conclusion that we should move ahead with the evolution of the network into a political movement in the following year.