Carolyn Kinsman, 11/10/2017
Research Unit > Recently completed research

Recently completed research

Pioneer mission in new communities - an evaluation for the Diocese of Oxford
Pioneering Pieces - an evaluation of the Church of Scotland’s Pioneer Pilot Project
Mission Under Lockdown - two reports on Church Army mission during the COVID-19 pandemic
The Church in Wales - Mission Area mapping and insight resources
God at Work - fresh expressions of Church in the Diocese of Leicester
Playfully Serious (Messy Church)
Diocese of Carlisle - an audit of fresh expressions of Church
A Bigger Difference - a report on social action and church growth in the Diocese of Liverpool
Dioceses of Meath and Kildare - strategic review
"Not as difficult as you think" - mission with young adults

 

Pioneer mission in new communities - an evaluation for the Diocese of Oxford

Diocese-of-OxfordIn 2020, the Diocese of Oxford asked Church Army's Research Unit to carry out an evaluation of eight pioneer pilot projects in areas of new housing.
 
Through a series of 30 interviews, we captured the insights of pioneers, the experiences of their teams and the understanding of those who oversee them. These have been compiled into a summary report (downloadable here) which describes the experiences of pioneers across varied mission contexts. The report also explores the practical and theological learning of practitioners and considers the factors affecting the sustainability of pioneering projects.

 

Pioneering Pieces - an evaluation of the Church of Scotland’s Pioneer Pilot Project

scotland2 - smallThis piece of external research work was conducted by Church Army's Research Unit between 2019 and 2020. We were asked to evaluate the Church of Scotland’s five-year Pioneer Pilot Project at the three-year stage, assess its impact and distil the learning for the Church of Scotland as a whole. We are grateful to all those involved in the pilot who took time to offer their reflections. We hope this evaluation will encourage and benefit all those involved in pioneering in the Church of Scotland.

Entitled Pioneering Pieces, the full report can be downloaded here. The six-page summary report can be downloaded here.




Mission Under Lockdown - two reports on Church Army mission during the COVID-19 pandemic

How have Church Army evangelists and others in the Church Army family been responding to the COVID-19 pandemic? In June 2020, Church Army's Research Unit produced two reports to begin to answer this question.

You can read them here.


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The Church in Wales - Mission Area mapping and insight resources

In 2020, Church Army's Research Unit worked with the Church in Wales and the Diocese of St Asaph to develop mapping and insight resources for the diocese’s Mission Areas. Each Mission Area is unique, with distinctive characteristics due to geographical location, demographic make-up and cultural heritage. These characteristics were quantified and brought together using census data and Church in Wales attendance figures to provide fresh insight and understanding of the communities that the diocese is called to serve.

The mapping and insight resources developed can be accessed here.



God at Work - fresh expressions of Church in the Diocese of Leicester 

God at Work (cover) - smallThese reports represent the culmination of more than eight years of research on fresh expressions of Church undertaken in partnership with the Diocese of Leicester. The results of a 2019 survey of fresh expressions in the diocese are analysed and brought into dialogue with the results of previous research conducted since 2011.

The summary report God at Work, co-written with the diocese  (downloadable here), outlines the key lessons learned.

A longer report, Fresh Expressions of Church in the Diocese of Leicester (downloadable here), explores the findings in more depth. 



 

Playfully Serious (Messy Church)

Playfully Serious (cover) - sm

Playfully Serious, which was published in February 2019, is the result of a two-year research project by Church Army's Research Unit, commissioned by the Archbishops’ Council. It confirms the serious effectiveness of Messy Church.

It is not ‘just a bit of fun’, as some critics persist in believing. Rather, Messy Church is reaching people who weren’t previously attending church, growing disciples and modelling new patterns of leadership, and it is doing so across a wide range of economic and social contexts.

You can find out more here.

 

Diocese of Carlisle - an audit of fresh expressions of Church

Diocese of Carlisle fxC reportThis report details an audit of the fresh expressions of Church (fxC) carried out by Church Army’s Research Unit. The diocesan process for monitoring fxC, including Network Youth Churches (NYC), was reviewed and the validity of the figures obtained by the diocese was investigated. The parish locations of diocesan initiatives were also briefly examined. Data collection took place in April 2019.

The Rt Revd Dr Emma Ineson (Bishop of Penrith) to Church Army's Research Unit: "We really appreciated both the professionalism and thoroughness of the report, and also the way in which you made every effort to ‘get the diocese and its work. We’re sure that this report will go a long way towards assisting us as we think through how to take forward the work of God through our various expressions of church in the coming months and years."

 

A Bigger Difference - a report on social action and church growth in the Diocese of Liverpool 

Front cover - small

The Diocese of Liverpool is asking God for a Bigger Church, so it can make a Bigger Difference - more people knowing Jesus, more justice in the world.

Engaging with church leaders and parishioners, this research explores how Bigger Difference social action - Christians undertaking social action, enabling more people to know Jesus and pursuing more justice in the world - is happening within the diocese and considers how this relates to both the numerical and spiritual growth of the Church in the Diocese of Liverpool.

Click here for a PDF copy of the report.

Videos related to A Bigger Difference

Resources for churches to make a Bigger Difference

 

Dioceses of Meath and Kildare - strategic review

Together in God's Love (cover)

During 2018, we assisted the Church of Ireland Dioceses of Meath and Kildare with a strategic review. The aims of this project were:

  • Creating a conversation within the dioceses that creates hopes and sense of possibility for the future
  • Providing a credible basis for an acceptable action plan moving forward

The methods used included a literature and data review, an online stakeholder survey and on-site consultancy visits. The project was completed in September 2018.

A news item about the review, plus a link to download the Together in God's Love report, can be found on the Meath and Kildare Dioceses website here.
 


"Not as difficult as you think": Mission with young adults

linking hands - smallIn 2017, the Church of England asked Church Army’s Research Unit to find out about successful, unsuccessful, and unproven mission with young adults (aged 18 to 30) which has taken place within the Church of England, other denominations, or through para-church groups.

In researching this topic, we completed 12 case studies of different approaches to mission and evangelism with non-churched young adults.

The results were both encouraging and challenging. They can be found on their own mini-website here, along with videos, recommendations and a summary report.