21 January 2014
Research for the Church today
Planning your preaching, teaching or small group series for 2014? Looking for the most up-to-date statistics and information on what evangelical Christians really think and do? Then the 21st Century Evangelicals research series is for you.
Some of the questions explored by the 21st Century Evangelicals series include: What is a typical evangelical Christian? What contributions do they make to society? What do they believe? What is distinctive about their lifestyle? What opinions do they hold about the most pressing issues of the day?
Up to 1,800 evangelicals have taken our regular surveys on relevant issues ranging from work, education, globalisation and money to the family, church life and evangelism. We have used the findings to produce handy A5-sized reports which are perfect for discussion in small groups. Discussion questions are available for each report and PowerPoint presentations can also be downloaded online.
The findings are sparking conversations and ideas in churches across the UK, helping them make more effective plans for mission and ministry today. Louise Chick from Network Church St Albans has used the reports in her church: "These are such fantastic little booklets, jam-packed with fascinating and thought provoking information. We have encouraged our cell groups to use them for prayer and discussion and made a copy available for each church member, along with the discussion-starter questions".
The reports prove challenging reading and reveal some gaps between what we say we care about and how we actually respond. For example in our recent Working faithfully? research we found that while evangelicals say they are very concerned about unemployment in the UK, only 13 per cent are in a church that runs a specific project for the unemployed.
The full range of reports is available to download from eauk.org/snapshot: Working faithfully? (Oct 2013), Life in the Church? (May 2013), Do we value education? (Feb 2013), Confidently sharing the gospel? (Nov 2012), Does money matter? (Sep 2012), The world on our doorstep? (May 2012), How's the family? (Feb 2012), Are we communicating? (Dec 2011), Does belief touch society? (Sep 2011) and 21st Century Evangelicals (Jan 2011). You can also order paper copies.
The 21st Century Evangelicals research series is run by the Evangelical Alliance in collaboration with our research club partners – CARE, Christians Against Poverty, Compassion, CWR, MAF, Open Doors and Prospects. If your organisation would like to hear more about becoming a research partner please contact Lucy Olofinjana on 020 7520 3843.
"Once again, through precise analysis and helpful insight, the Evangelical Alliance has provided us with a reliable lens through which we can better understand the context in which we seek to serve – and so enabling us to focus with clarity on issues we should prioritise" John Glass, General Superintendent, Elim Pentecostal Churches.
"The Confidently sharing the gospel? research highlighted that many Christians are too scared to share the gospel, and that they often doubt that such sharing is even necessary. The report provided a useful stimulus to our church to continue to teach others about why we share the gospel, and how." Ben Epps, pastor, Longmeadow and Immanuel Evangelical Churches, Stevenage.
"I have certainly found previous reports very helpful and fully endorse the ongoing surveys and information." John Partington, National Leader, Assemblies of God UK.
Snapshot: food for thought from our reports
- Almost a third of respondents felt they received no support from their church when they were made unemployed.
- 45% are in a church that regularly prays for one or more of their local schools.
- 72% came to faith before they were 20 years old.
- Over a quarter of grandparents see themselves as having an important role in the Christian nurture of their grandchildren.
- 60% feel they have missed a chance to speak to others about God in the past four months