Exploring the Family Ministry Landscape: Major UK research project

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A major research project will reveal the scope of families workin the majority of UK Churches. Exploring the Family MinistryLandscape is thought to be the first project of its kind in the UKand will look at what churches are doing to support families, aswell as the range of training and resources that are alreadyavailable for families work.

"Families come in all shapes and sizes, and society'sunderstanding of what 'family' means has changed over the years,"said Gail Adcock, Families Ministries Development Officer(Discipleship and Ministries), who is taking a lead on theresearch. "Whatever a family looks like, the Church should careabout and seek to support that family in life and in faith. We hopethat this project will help us to see how that is already happeningand learn how we can do it better."  

"Family matters," added the Rt Revd Paul Butler, Bishop of Durham,"whether it's a single parent family, blended families, immigrantfamilies or everything in between. The Church has a duty to supportpeople in their relationships and in the challenges they face. Wehaven't got it all figured out just yet - and I hope this projectwill help us learn and grow as a community of faith for whom familymatters."

Exploring the Family Ministry Landscape is a partnership betweenthe Methodist Church in Britain and the Consultative Group onMinistry Among Children (CGMC). CGMC is a network of CTBI and brings together all those with national responsibilityfor work with children in churches and Christian charities for themajor Christian Churches in the UK, including the Church ofEngland, Methodist Church, the United Reformed Church and theBaptist Union of Great Britain. The research project is due toreport in Autumn 2015.

"CGMC seeks to inspire people to act as advocates and changemakers in children's and family ministry for all of our churchesand organisations," said CGMC's Moderator, Penny Fuller. "Thisproject is an ecumenical collaboration that seeks to challenge andsupport those who equip and resource the development of ministrywith families."

Gail is also conducting more in-depth research into families workwithin the British Methodist Church, which will report this Autumn.This will include regional consultation events on 17 June(Warrington), 24 June (Leeds), 8 July (Harpenden), 19 September(South West) and 22 September (London). Email Gail for more information.