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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 the volume (and, through social...
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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 the current literature, to explore...
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Ethical Considerations in Visual Research

This post is the last in a series by the Congregational Studies Visual Methods Fellow, Roman R. Williams, Ph.D., Assistant Professor in the Department of Sociology and Social Work at Calvin College. He is an expert in visual research methodology, and his current research looks at...
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Rev. Lyle E. Schaller, 1923-2015

Rev. Lyle E. Schaller, a popular pastor and church consultant who gave practical advice on how congregations can grow and thrive, has died at the age of 91. From the New York Times obituary, Armed with research and anecdotal evidence, Mr. Schaller offered churches advice on...
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How to Get Started Collecting Congregational Data

The UJA-Federation of New York developed a great resource on how congregations can begin and continue to collect data and make decisions based on the data collected. Check out their free report, Data Maturity for Synagogues: Incorporating Data into the Decision-Making Culture...
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Grant Money for Pastor/Scholar Teams!

Are you a religious leader or religious scholar who has an innovative research idea for studying North American Christian congregations? Louisville Institute has a call for research teams comprised of both academic and pastoral leaders to work in collaboration for the project....
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Bringing Programs into Focus: Using Photos for Evaluation

Evaluation is an important, though frequently neglected, component of any program. Some congregations use word of mouth feedback and other leaders deliberately seek out participants to assess outcomes through conversations. Others evaluate their programs through questionnaires...
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Pastoral Leadership that Matters: A UCC Study

Leadership matters. More specifically, pastoral leadership matters. In every setting of congregational life, talk of leadership abounds. In the United Church of Christ, the vision plan of the national setting includes the goal of having “a wealth of prepared, excellent...
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Congregational Snapshots: Understanding and Engaging Congregations through Cell Phone Photographs

This is the first post in a  series by the Congregational Studies Visual Methods Fellow, Roman R. Williams, Ph.D., Assistant Professor in the Department of Sociology and Social Work at Calvin College. He is an expert in visual research methodology, and his current research looks...
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Ordaining Women: Results from the National Congregations Study

The Huffington Post published an article about the role of women in clergy roles in the United States, looking at data from the most recent wave of the National Congregations Survey. One of the most interesting parts is interactive graphic timeline examining when women were first...
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