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The Lilly Endowment Clergy Renewal Programs: An Invitation to Dream

“What will make your heart sing?” When I first became director of the Lilly Endowment Clergy Renewal Programs at Christian Theological Seminary three years ago, I was unsure of what to make of that question. It seemed so vague and open-ended for...
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Introducing: The New StudyingCongregations.org

After eight months of behind-the-scenes planning, the resource staff is excited to announce the newly redesigned StudyingCongregations.org. In 2013, we launched the beta version of the site and developed a rich archive of articles on...
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Ellen Childs Signs Off With: “Just Try It!”

  After three years developing StudyingCongregations.org, I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about how congregational leaders can ask better questions, uncover underlying issues, and have a deeper understanding of their congregations…...
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The Disabled Church: Desiring Difference within Congregational Life

How does a congregation make time and space for the disabilities and differences of those who constitute it? How does it claim those differences as vital to its forms of knowing and loving God rather than disruptive to its unity? Such questions...
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When Congregation-Based Activism Is…Complicated

Though most conservative Christian organizations, denominations, and congregations have abandoned explicitly homophobic rhetoric in their arguments against gay rights in their effort to craft a politically viable position, others have increased...
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Marti’s Latest Research Explores Latino Protestant Congregations

The Latino Protestant Congregations (LPC) Project, directed by Dr. Mark Mulder and Congregational Studies Team member Dr. Gerardo Marti, is a team-based examination of Latino Protestants in the U.S. This project is a close look at a large gap in...
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Congregations and Community Involvement: The Impact of Friendships and Congregational Size

Contributor Jennifer McClure shares her recent published research examining the intersection of network connections, congregational size, and community involvement.  A few years ago, I wondered how a congregation’s organizational context shapes...
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Questioning Common Knowledge: Using Research to Strategize

Rachel Held Evans wrote an op-ed for the Washington Post this week about millennials and the church. She argues that millennials don’t really want auditoriums, big screens, contemporary music, and big marketing campaigns. Millennials...
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Spring into the Neighborhood: Walking Tour

Spring has finally arrived! Spring is a time for cleaning and airing out old, winterized spaces, and providing room for growth and renewal. Congregations can and should take the cue from the warming temperatures to look for avenues of growth and...
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