The President of the Baptist Union of Great Britain is elected annually and takes office at the annual Baptist Assembly held in May. Our current President, Ken Benjamin, took office at our Assembly in Telford on 18 May 2019. Yinka Oyekan was also welcomed as our new Vice-President.
The President’s main role is as a communicator/facilitator of our Union’s vision and mission. The President travels around our Union, engaging with local churches, regional Associations and Colleges.
A key part of the role is leading the Baptist Steering Group
(BSG) Accompanying Group
, which provides prayer support and shares in spiritual and missional reflection with BSG. Click here for more information about the role of our President
There will also be occasions when the President will provide a symbol or focus for unity of our Union, and as such will represent our Union at various civic and ecumenical events.
President: The Revd Ken Benjamin
Vice President: The Revd Yinka Oyekan
I am married to Sue, and we have two adult-children both at university. Sue and I grew up in South London and were members of our local Baptist church. I consider myself to have been blessed by being born into a mixed-race family. My Dad was from an Asian background, having been born in Sri-Lanka, and my mum is from a white-British family. Prior to church ministry I was a retail manager and trainer for one of the department stores on Oxford Street and a lecturer, teaching business studies and management skills.
I have served as a minister in Chichester Baptist Church for over 22 years. I love the church minister role that I have been called to (most days!) The times that we live in call for us to think beyond our existing patterns and programmes in imaginative and creative ways, and whole-life discipleship and missional communities are key to my ministry.
Whole Life Discipleship:
I am an Associate Speaker for LICC (The London Institute for Contemporary Christianity). Their message is that all Christians should go into their everyday ‘Frontline’ world confident that God can work through them. This fits really well in a Baptist context with our emphasis on the priesthood of all believers. Many of our churches already engage with their ideas and resources and I am seeking to grow and develop this link. Whatever we seek to do as churches, whatever events we put on or new initiatives we introduce, they will always fall short of their potential unless the individual followers of Jesus, in our churches, are equipped and confident as his representatives. I believe the messages from LICC hold some keys for us at this time and that there is further room to engage with them in a way that specifically fits our denomination.
We appreciate our Sunday services at our church and try to make them as accessible and relevant as possible. But we also recognise that a growing number of people want to explore faith in a completely different environment. So, for the last six years, we have also run various monthly gatherings in a wide variety of contexts and locations
. A growing number of Baptist Churches are exploring and trying similar ways of reaching out and I am hoping to share ideas and seek to encourage any churches who are looking to explore new and additional
ways of gathering.
: Ken has written a small ‘give-away’ book about grief and bereavement, ‘Some words for another time’
, which is used by a number of our churches
as a resource for funeral services. This can be ordered from our online shop.
With my free time, I enjoy playing golf and tennis as well as time away in our VW camper.
Ken's theme for his year as President is Where do we grow from here?
Ken has also produced a series of videos and studies for small groups
to follow the theme
Click here to access a list of former BUGB Presidents
Please click here to find out more about 'Divine Windows' - the theme for Dave Gregory's year as President 2018-19.
Please click here to access 'As in heaven' - the theme for Dianne Tidball's year as President 2017-18.
Click here to access 'Anointed to do good' - the theme for Rupert Lazar's Presidential Year 2016-17.
Click here to access letters from Jenni Entrican and guest blogs on the Daring Greatly theme of her Presidential year 2015-16.
Click here to access the blog posts from Chris Ellis during his Presidential year 2014-15.
Click here to access the blog posts from Ernie Whalley during his Presidential year 2013-14.