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Flourishing Update - February 5, 2020

Demographic, cultural changes key to declining church membership: Sociologist of religion (Featuring Dr. Joel Thiessen)


Shifting immigration patterns and broader social changes are key factors in declining membership within the Anglican Church of Canada, according to a sociologist who studies religion in Canada. But while many Protestant denominations face similar challenges, growing congregations also exist within these traditions that share a number of common features.

Originally Posted in the Anglican Journal, January 2, 2020.


What We're Reading

Faith Formation with a New Generation

John Roberto, Lisa Brown, Tanya Eustace Campen, Lynn Barger Elliott, and Lee Yates

Faith Formation with a New Generation provides a framework for the future of faith formation with children and youth that will help in the transformation of how faith formation might be looked at and designed. It comes from a more organic and wide-ranging approach to faith formation that is grounded in the children and youth literature which then provides a solid foundation for lifelong faith formation. The book has a familiar tone: the centrality of an intergenerational faith community and the family; and something new: 21st century approaches and methods for engaging a new generation of young people (Gen Z) and their parents. Many of the chapters provide helpful tools for consideration.

Chapter 1 presents the essential features of a twenty-first century approach to faith formation with children and adolescents.

Chapter 2 explores how the intergenerational faith community provides rich resources for faith formation and guides you in identifying how to provide intergenerational faith forming experiences for children and adolescents.

Chapter 3 explores the central role of families in faith community and guides you in utilizing five core strategies for family faith forming experiences for children and adolescents.

Chapter 4 explores how Generation Z is learning in new ways and guides you in reimagining and redesigning age-group faith formation with children and adolescents.

Chapter 5 integrates the key concepts and practices so you can design a faith formation plan for children and adolescents (and their families) that integrates intergenerational, family, and age group faith formation.

Dr. Arch Wong, Professor of Practical Theology, Flourishing Congregations Institute.


Upcoming Opportunities

  • Do you want to:

  • Identify low-income areas and see which churches or ministries are present to serve those families,

  • Visualise where specific cultural groups are living and whether there are helpful ministries located nearby that can connect with that culture,

  • See graphs representing the Christian and demographic information of an area they select

  • And much more. Checkout WayBase by clicking here.

  • Course with Dr. Roger Helland, Plunging the Depths of Spiritual Renewal. To register for the Saturday February 22 seminar or 1-credit course, click here. To register for the 3-credit modular course February 18-22, click here.

  • View the workshop YouTube Promo with Mark Buchanan, click here.

  • The New Leaf Arts Tour Network. We have been working on an idea to connect our network that is spread across Canada using the arts. Innovation and creation are marks of both the entrepreneurial spirit and the arts, and since creative people tend to hang around New Leaf we want to give artists among us a path across Canada to share their art with the Network. Click here for more information.

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