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The "Calling Congregation" encourages promising future clergy

Until the 1960s, denominations often encouraged congregations to help identify promising future clergy from among their youth. With the abolition of national offices of vocation, the American Church turned away... read more >

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Building Hope Among African-American Youth

Through a three-week residential summer event designed by Dr. Anne Streaty Wimberly, African-American teenagers are immersed in a program designed to help them better connect with their Christian identities. Participants... read more >

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Fostering Multiracial Congregations

The prevalence of single-race churches is largely the result of affinity group recruitment. That is, existing members tend to appeal to, and tend to be appealing to, people of the... read more >

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Congregational Life Assessment Resources

Hartford Seminary’s Hartford Institute for Religion Research offers three free self-assessment inventories, which assess member perspectives on church programs and clergy needs. The responses of the 11,386 respondents in 84... read more >

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Subtly Proactive: Judicatories and Their Congregations

Church members today will not be coerced or treated as subservient. Church pastoral leadership must now be oriented toward influencing, directing, coordinating, and guiding the thought and behavior of persons... read more >

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Meeting needs of small parishes

Most judicatories have at least several congregations with open pulpits that cannot pay enough to attract a full time pastor, and new clergy who resist opportunities to pastor small churches.... read more >

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Large, Wealthy Congregations and Their Judicatories

In this essay, church researcher Loren Mead distinguishes between large congregations and wealthy congregations, noting that large is a contextual term, depending upon the churchs denomination, and wealthy churches are... read more >

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When a Judicatory Can Intervene to Promote Church Change

Congregations are open to judicatory influence at key moments: at the change of a pastor, in times of church conflict, in the planning and execution of regional activities and programs,... read more >

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The Relationship Between Congregations and Middle Judicatories Part 2

In this essay, church researcher Loren Mead summarizes the way each of eight dynamics affects how a particular congregation may understand its place on a continuum of relationship to its... read more >

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The Relationship Between Congregations and Middle Judicatories Part 1

The relationship between a congregation and its regional body is almost always problematic, but the specific problem is hard to predict. In this paper, researcher Loren Mead introduces eight key... read more >

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Meeting Information Needs: Amazon's Alexa and The Church of England

"Religion exists to answer the questions and supply the needs that couldn’t possibly be bought with money. But...

Serving its Community Transformed a Dwindling Church

"Trinity’s building is surrounded by the bleaker symbols of urban life, including graffiti-covered billboards, a...

Caring for Creation

"Whether it is Wendell Berry, Michael Polan, Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, Pope Francis, Prince Charles, Mondragon or...

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