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Applying the balanced affect model of clergy psychological wellbeing, as conceptualised by the Francis Burnout Inventory (FBI) and operationalised by The Index of Balanced Affect Change (TIBACh), this study explored the impact of seven sets of variables on individual differences in perceived changes in positive affect and negative affect among 737 clergy in the USA serving in the Episcopal Church during the Covid-19 pandemic. The seven sets of variables were: personal, psychological, contextual, ministry-related, church orientation, theological stance, and attitudinal. The data supported the balanced affect model of clergy psychological wellbeing by demonstrating how different variables predicted individual differences in negative affect and in positive affect. For example, clergywomen showed no differences from clergymen in terms of positive affect, but higher levels of negative affect; active self-supporting and retired clergy showed no differences from stipendiary clergy in terms of positive affect, but lower levels of negative affect; Evangelical clergy showed no differences in negative affect, but higher levels in positive affect. The balanced affect model provides insights into how clergy may be better supported during a pandemic.
Inspired by the objectives of the Church of England’s Living Ministry Research Project (to understand the factors that enable clergy to flourish and to understand how these factors vary according to person, background, etc.), the present analyses were designed to test the capacity of an individual differences approach to the science of clergy well-being for delivering such objectives. The specific case in point concerned understanding the connections between migration to digital technology and changes in clergy well-being during the pandemic. The data demonstrated how the individual differences approach both offered explanatory power and provided insights into how personal support and professional development could be most effectively structured and targeted.
This study draws on data provided to the Covid-19 & Church-21 Survey by 826 ‘non-ministering’ Anglicans living in England in order to explore why some people gave up worshipping online or in church during the Covid-19 lockdown in 2021. Nearly a quarter of the participants had given up online worship, attending offline services in church, or both: 15 per cent had given up on online worship, 13 per cent had given up on going to church, and 5 per cent had given up on both. Giving up was significantly correlated with negative experience of services. Those under the age of forty and Anglo-Catholics were most likely to give up online worship. Women and extraverts were most likely to give up on socially distanced services in church. The results indicate the sorts of people who might drift from the church post-pandemic and what the Church could concentrate on to prevent this process.
Drawing on detailed questionnaire data (including personal, religious and psychological factors) provided by 416 pairs of curates and training incumbents, the present study addresses two core research questions. The first research question develops and tests a new measure: the Smith Attitude toward Training Incumbents Scale (SATIS). The second research question explores the influence of personal, religious and psychological characteristics of both the curate and the training incumbent in predicting curates’ positive attitude toward the training incumbent. The data demonstrated that religious factors (Catholic or Evangelical, Liberal or Conservative, Charismatic or not Charismatic) were not significant. However, both personal and psychological factors of the curates themselves were significant. The curates who rated their training incumbent more highly were older and more emotionally stable. Personal factors were also significant for the training incumbents, but not psychological factors. The curates rated more highly the experience of working with younger training incumbents. The most satisfactory experience of curacy was associated with older and emotionally stable curates working with younger training incumbents.
Within the one Church, the Church of England holds together in tension two distinctive streams, one rooted in the Catholic tradition (shaping Anglo-Catholic clergy) and one rooted in the Reformed tradition (shaping Evangelical clergy). Comparing the responses of 263 Anglo-Catholic clergy with the responses of 140 Evangelical clergy (all engaged in full-time stipendiary parish ministry) to the Coronavirus, Church & You Survey, the present analyses tested the thesis that these two groups would read the Church of England’s response to the Covid-19 crisis differently. The data demonstrated that, although Anglo-Catholic clergy were as willing as Evangelical clergy to embrace the digital age to assist with pastoral care, they were significantly less enthusiastic about the provision of online worship, about the closure of churches, and about the notion of virtual rather than geographical communities. The centrality of sacred space (parish church) and local place (parish system) remain more important in the Catholic tradition than in the Reformed tradition. As a consequence, Anglo-Catholic clergy have felt more disadvantaged and marginalized by the Church of England’s response to the Covid-19 crisis.
Since the Anglican Church in England and Wales began to build schools long before the state developed machinery to do so, around a quarter of all primary schools remain connected with the Anglican Church. The church school inspection system maintains that Anglican schools have a distinctive ethos. The Student Voice Project argues that school ethos is generated by the implicit collective values, beliefs and behaviours of the students, and was designed to give explicit voice to the students in response to six specific areas of school life identified by the Anglican school inspection criteria as relevant to school ethos. Drawing on data provide by 8,111 year-five and year-six students attending Church in Wales primary schools, the present study reports on the six ethos measures and on significant differences reported by female and male students, and by year-five and year-six students.
Drawing on data from a survey conducted among 7,059 students aged 13–15 in England and Wales, this study examines parental and peer influence on church attendance among 645 students who identified themselves as Anglicans (Church of England or Church in Wales). The data demonstrated that young Anglicans who practised their Anglican identity by attending church did so primarily because their parents were Anglican churchgoers. Moreover, young Anglican churchgoers were most likely to keep going to church if their churchgoing parents also talked with them about their faith. Among this age group of Anglicans, peer support seemed insignificant in comparison with parental support. The implication from these findings for an Anglican Church strategy for ministry among children and young people is that it may be wise to invest in the education and formation of churchgoing Anglican parents.
Retinoblastoma is the most common primary intraocular tumor of childhood with >95% survival rates in the US. Traditional therapy for retinoblastoma often included enucleation (removal of the eye). While much is known about the visual, physical, and cognitive ramifications of enucleation, data are lacking about survivors' perception of how this treatment impacts overall quality of life.
Qualitative analysis of an open-ended response describing how much the removal of an eye had affected retinoblastoma survivors' lives and in what ways in free text, narrative form.
Four hundred and four retinoblastoma survivors who had undergone enucleation (bilateral disease = 214; 52% female; mean age = 44, SD = 11) completed the survey. Survivors reported physical problems (n = 205, 50.7%), intrapersonal problems (n = 77, 19.1%), social and relational problems (n = 98, 24.3%), and affective problems (n = 34, 8.4%) at a mean of 42 years after diagnosis. Three key themes emerged from survivors' responses; specifically, they (1) continue to report physical and intrapersonal struggles with appearance and related self-consciousness due to appearance; (2) have multiple social and relational problems, with teasing and bullying being prominent problems; and (3) reported utilization of active coping strategies, including developing more acceptance and learning compensatory skills around activities of daily living.
Significance of results
This study suggests that adult retinoblastoma survivors treated with enucleation continue to struggle with a unique set of psychosocial problems. Future interventions can be designed to teach survivors more active coping skills (e.g., for appearance-related issues, vision-related issues, and teasing/bullying) to optimize survivors' long-term quality of life.
Recent discussion and research has pointed to the changing functions of archdeacons within the Church of England as the role has become expanded to combine both the traditional statutory functions with flexible and visionary leadership skills within a changing church. This study draws on data collected in 2009 from 186 active and retired male archdeacons in order to assess the psychological profile established by that time. Compared with the psychological profile of 626 clergymen, male archdeacons were much more likely to prefer the SJ temperament (60 per cent compared with 31 per cent), a temperament ideally suited for effective administration of the statutory functions. As a consequence, preference for intuition was lower among male archdeacons (38 per cent compared with 62 per cent), as was preference for perceiving (9 per cent compared with 32 per cent), qualities core for flexibility and visionary leadership.
The present study employs Jungian psychological type theory to examine the profile of 236 Readers serving in the Church of England (108 males and 128 females) alongside previously published data providing the psychological type profile of clergy serving within the Church of England (626 men and 237 women). The analysis was interpreted to test two competing accounts of Reader ministry: that Reader ministry expresses similar qualities to those reflected in ordained ministry, and that Reader ministry represents a pioneer ministry on the boundaries of the church. Overall the findings demonstrate significant psychological similarities between those exercising Reader ministry and those exercising ordained ministry, suggesting that, in the current generation, Readers tend to present themselves as clones of the clergy rather than as distinctive voices equipped for pioneer ministry or for fresh expressions of church.
Abstract – The remote and rural St Davids Cathedral in West Wales receives a steady flow of visitors throughout the year. In order to develop its ministry in this field, a sample of 514 visitors completed a detailed questionnaire designed to explore their experiences of the cathedral, together with a measure of their personal church attendance. The data demonstrated clear differences between the experiences of pilgrims (defined as visitors who attend church services weekly) and the experiences of secular tourists (defined as visitors who never attend church services). The implications of these findings are discussed for cathedral ministry more generally.
Some argue that cathedrals have been sources of tourism since their establishment (Lewis, 1996). Both the importance of tourism for cathedrals, and the importance of cathedrals for tourism, have been highlighted by Heritage and Renewal, the report of the Archbishops' Commission on Cathedrals (1994, p. 135):
Tourism is of great significance to cathedrals – in terms of their mission of teaching, evangelism and welcome, and as an important source of income. Cathedrals also play a major part in the nation's tourism.
Comparatively little is known, however, about who visits cathedrals, why they visit, and what they make of the visitor experience. Answers to such questions are particularly pertinent to illuminating why places of religious interest, especially cathedrals, are so central to tourism in what some commentators currently regard as the post-Christian context of contemporary Britain (Brown, 2001).
One of the first to explore such questions about cathedral visitors with some scientific rigour was English Cathedrals and Tourism, a report produced for the English Tourist Board (1979). A questionnaire was sent to 45 cathedrals and greater churches in England, of which 39 were subsequently visited.
Abstract – This article situates the notion of rural theology within the broader framework of contemporary concern with contextual theologies. Then it identifies the contours of rural theology that give shape to the present volume: perspectives from the Bible, perspectives from ordinary theology, theological and sociological perspectives, historical perspectives, listening to visitors, listening to the community, listening to churchgoers, listening to church leaders, and satisfaction and stress in ministry.
Theology is a discipline shaped more by its subject matter than by the methods with which the subject matter is approached. Theologians (ordinary theologians as much as professional theologians) are concerned with the study of discourse about God and with all that purports to reveal knowledge of God or to be concerned with the experience of God.
Throughout the twentieth century Christian theology became increasingly aware of the importance of perspective in informing and shaping the theological exercise. Contextual theology recognizes that the same subject matter may be viewed from different perspectives and that such perspectival viewing can generate authentic and legitimate insights into the subject matter that grasps the theologian's attention – the study of discourse about God. Liberation theology reflects on the insights of those who see God and hear God speak from the perspective of the oppressed. Feminist theology reflects on the insights of those who see God and hear God speak from the perspective of women. Black theology reflects on the insights of those who see God and hear God speak from the perspective of people of colour. Such perspectives are not in competition, but are complementary as the whole people of God talk about the things of God, as the whole people of God share their insights into the revelation of God.
The essays brought together here present a broad assessment of the serious issues facing rural life and the rural church today. The authors are drawn from the Anglican, Baptist, Methodist and Pentecostal Churches. The essays explore a wide range of biblical, theological, sociological, and historical concerns and topics. Throughout, the book is informed by a spirit of listening - to church-goers, clergy, church leaders, and local communities. Rural Life and Rural Church provides an invaluable resource for clergy and lay Christians involved in rural ministry, initial and continuing ministerial education, and Christian men and women living in the countryside.