Book Review: John Stott: The Making of a Leader

John Stott: The Making of a Leader by Timothy Dudley-Smith is the first of a two part biography of Stott’s life, covering his family background/ birth to the early years of his International ministry. I’ve let this book sit on my shelf since the last millennium….how stupid!

I tend to find biographies quite hard to read as they can be a bit dry and boring, going into too much detail that I find irrelevant. However, this biography, although rather in depth, seemed extremely timely.

I enjoyed reading about Stott’s early years and his conversion under Nash (bash) and his subsequent place in the Bash Camps. It seems that an amazing work happened in those years as I always seem to be reading or hearing great men of the gospel who were converted and discipled through the camps. I never knew that Stott had refused to go to War and that he and his father nearly became estranged over it. Whilst I understand that the War Office agreed with his decision and it was lawful, I couldn’t help but think he should have served. However, time has proven his decision was a fruitful and faithful one.

Stott comes across as an extremely able yet humble man. He has an incredible intellect, yet seems happy to serve where he is. I love the fact that he was a one church man. All Souls was his home in so many ways. It is a real challenge to read of such faithfulness and vision. Chapters of particular interest were the ones detailing the Billy Graham rally’s and his involvement; his CICCU missions; and his holiday home in Wales….especially Geraint Fielder thinking he had given him German Measles (and therefore the Queen!).

If you want to know more about Stott and like to read thick books…this is the one for you. It’s around 500 pages long and I read it in a busy week….I just couldn’t put it down.


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