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The Evangelical Alliance (EA) seeks to represent evangelical Christians in the UK.[1] Formed in 1846, the Alliance aims to bring Christians together and help them listen to, and be heard by, the government, media and society.[2][3]

Evangelical Alliance
Evangelical Alliance logo 2017.png
FoundedAugust 1846
FoundersEdward Steane, John Henderson of Park, Ridley Haim Herschell and Sir Culling Eardley, 3rd Baronet
TypeEvangelical Christian union
Registration no.212325 (England & Wales) SC040576 (Scotland)
FocusEvangelical Christianity
HeadquartersLondon, N1
  • England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland
OriginsLondon, United Kingdom
Area served
United Kingdom, worldwide
MethodProvides advocacy, advice and information
3,500 churches, 700 organisations
57 (approx)

Headquarters is in London with offices in Cardiff, Glasgow and Belfast. The Alliance works across 79 denominations, 3,300 churches, 750 organisations and thousands of individual members. It is also a founding member of the World Evangelical Alliance (WEA), a global network of more than 600 million evangelical Christians,[4] which in January 2015 announced plans for closer co-operation and witness with the World Council of Churches.[5][6]


The Evangelical Alliance was formed in 1846. The major founders were Ridley Haim Herschell,[7] Rev. Edward Steane, a Baptist pastor from Camberwell, John Henderson of Park and Sir Culling Eardley, 3rd Baronet.[2] Eardley became the first chairperson and he led the new organisation as it campaigned internationally for religious freedom. In 1852 he campaigned on behalf of the Tuscan prisoners of conscience Francesco Madiai and Rosa Madiai.[8][9] (They had been imprisoned when they announced that they had become Protestants).[10]


The Evangelical Alliance has over 3300 church members. Several well-known Christian organisations are also members of the Alliance, for example Tearfund - which was originally established by the Evangelical Alliance[11] - Hope 08, Fusion and Serving In Mission (SIM).

The general director is Steve Clifford, replacing Joel Edwards in April 2009.[citation needed] Gavin Calver is director of churches in mission,[citation needed] while Dave Landrum was appointed as director of advocacy in March 2011.[citation needed] Peter Lynas directs Northern Ireland,[citation needed] Fred Drummond, Scotland,[citation needed] and Elfed Godding, Wales.[citation needed]


The Evangelical Alliance has supported ecumenism with the Roman Catholic Church. This has been countered with claims that ecumenism is not consistent with the historic evangelical practice or doctrine of its founders.[12][13] The Alliance enthusiastically endorsed the 'Thy Kingdom Come' initiative of the Archbishops of York and Canterbury in 2019, a culminating service in Trafalgar Square attracted participation of the Roman Catholic Cardinal Vincent Nichols. A message of support from Pope Francis was aired.[14][15]

The alliance is openly opposed to same-sex relationships and homosexuality, preaching sexual abstinence for those with same-sex attractions and only allowing lesbian and gay people to join the organisation on the basis that they "come to see the need to be transformed".[16] Through Gweini (The Council of the Christian Voluntary Sector in Wales), Stephen Crabb MP is associated with the evangelical group.[16]


  1. ^ "Host an EA Sunday". Evangelical Alliance. Retrieved 19 October 2016.
  2. ^ a b Rosemary Chadwick, ‘Steane, Edward (1798–1882)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, 2004 accessed 30 July 2014
  3. ^ "About us". 3 April 2012. Retrieved 6 March 2013.
  4. ^ "WEA - World Evangelical Alliance Est 1846 - Page Whoweare". Retrieved 6 March 2013.
  5. ^ "WEA and WCC representatives explore possibilities of working together". World Council of Churches website. 22 January 2015. Archived from the original on 23 February 2015. Retrieved 23 February 2015.
  6. ^ "WEA and WCC Representatives Explore Possibilities of Working Together". WEA website. 22 January 2015. Archived from the original on 23 February 2015. Retrieved 23 February 2015.
  7. ^ Jacobs, Joseph; Lipkind, Goodman. "Herschell, Ridley Haim". Jewish Encyclopedia. Retrieved 27 April 2019.
  8. ^ John Wolffe, ‘Eardley, Sir Culling Eardley, third baronet (1805–1863)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, 2004 accessed 30 July 2014
  9. ^ Anderson, John Shaw (1971). Heroes of the Faith in Italy. Illinois: Bible Truth Publishers. p. 115. ASIN B000Z2ST2Y.
  10. ^ Madiai, Francesco; Madiai, Rosa (12 November 2011). Letters Of The Madiai: And Visits To Their Prisons By The Misses Senhouse. Charleston: Nabu Press. p. 180. ISBN 9781271735235.
  11. ^ Matthew Frost, Tearfund's Chief Executive. "History". Tearfund. Retrieved 6 March 2013.
  12. ^ Harris, F.J. (18 January 2014). "Stand fast for authentic evangelicalism". Archived from the original on 27 February 2015. Retrieved 27 February 2015.
  13. ^ Fountain, David (2001). "Today's FIEC and E.J. Poole-Connor, Appendix". Archived from the original on 27 February 2015. Retrieved 27 February 2015.
  14. ^ "Trafalgar Square comes alive as thousands of Christians attended Pentecost Sunday celebrations". 10 June 2019. Retrieved 18 October 2019.
  15. ^ "Gavin shares why we're so passionate about joining with Thy Kingdom Come". Retrieved 18 October 2019.
  16. ^ a b "Crabb mentality (HP Sauce)". Private Eye (1422). Pressdram Ltd. 8 July 2016. p. 9.

Further readingEdit

  • Massie, James William (1847), The Evangelical Alliance, Its Origin and Development. The first history.
  • Thompson, Todd. "The Evangelical Alliance, Religious Liberty, and the Evangelical Conscience in Nineteenth-Century Britain," Journal of Religious History (2009) 33#1 pp 49–65.

External linksEdit