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What does church planting achieve?

One of the key changes that has been introduced as part of the Renewal and Reform programme within the Church of England is in the way that Church Commissioners’ money is distributed to dioceses. Instead of all of it being allocated using a formula determining need, part of it now is distributed as Strategic Development […]

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How do we reach the under 40s?

Here in the Diocese of Southwell and Nottingham, we are just completing our diocesan conference at Swanwick, and it has been focussed on issues around our aspirations for growth under the heading ‘wider, younger, deeper.’ This includes seeing, by 2023: 7,000 new disciples in the Church of England in this diocese; 1,000 new young leaders; a […]

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Does growth need management?

Over the weekend, two articles appeared in the Guardian by Harriet Sherwood, citing Martyn Percy’s disagreement with the direction the Church of England is apparently taking. The first cites comments from the conclusion to a forthcoming book, which appears to express Martyn’s overall discontent. One of Britain’s senior theologians has warned that the Church of England […]

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Does setting targets help with growth?

Last Saturday I attended our Diocesan Synod—and came away having had a fascinating and absorbing time. (I am not sure I had ever anticipated saying that about a Diocesan Synod!) The first half of the meeting was what you might usually expect. We receive annual reports from across the diocese, the most important being the […]

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Can the C of E do evangelism?

One of Justin Welby’s personal commitments for his time in office is to prioritise evangelism. With the Archbishop of York he set up the Evangelism Task Group as part of Archbishops’ Council, and it reported to Synod earlier this month. Introducing it, Welby emphasised the centrality of evangelism to the life of the church: On […]

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Is Church decline the fault of evangelicals?

Last week Mark Woods posted an intriguing article asking whether evangelicals are to blame for the decline in people claiming to be ‘religious’. He is responding to a new survey conducted on behalf of Linda Woodhead which shows that, for those under 40, ‘no religion’ is the new religion. In a strange way, this might be […]

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Change (and growth?) for the Church of England

There is a fascinating new article Resurrection? published in The Economist, taking a look at decline, growth and change in the Church of England. It is interesting for a number of reasons: It looks carefully at the actual numbers which tell us about decline, growth and change in the Church It takes seriously a range of […]

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