Baptists in Australia:A Church with a Heritage and a Future – PDF
Philip J Hughes
and Darren Cronshaw
“The 2011 Census showed that, at a time when many of the denominations were experiencing decline in numbers, the Baptists have continued to grow in numbers.
Furthermore, the 2011 National Church Life Survey shows that Baptist churches are generally growing and showing signs of vitality. It will be interesting to see whether there will be continued growth in a culture which enjoys its informality, but at the same time has a strong sense of community developed through high levels of involvement.”
Australia’s Religious Communities: Facts and Figures – PDF
Australia’s Religious Communities: Facts and Figures provides statistical information on 90 religious groups in Australia. Using the 2011 Census and recent surveys, it describes the size of each group and the changes that have occurred over the years, the variation by capital city and state, the profile of age, and ethnic background and language. It also describes the people who are active in religious activities in the various groups.
This book is invaluable for leaders of religious groups, students of religion, and all who are interested in the changes that occurring in Australian society. The book is currently available as a pdf or hardcopy.
Australia’s Religious Communities: Facts and Figures – HARDCOPY
An essential reference on Australia’s religious groups with the latest information from the Australian 2011 Census. Church leaders and everyone interested in the changing profile of Australia’s profile will find this invaluable. This book describes the changing profile and participation in each religious group. Find here:
- changing numbers – growth and decline,
- the impact of immigration – and what languages immigrants use,
- profile of age – and like trends in the future
- who is participating in worship … and who is not.
Every religious group with over 1,000 people identifying with it is covered in the book. Are we really becoming a secular nation? How large, really, is the Moslem population in Australia and how fast is it growing? What is the fastest growing religious group in Australia? You will be surprised by many of the answers!
A Handbook of Cross-Cultural Ministry, by Philip Hughes and Sharon Bond
From the very beginning of the church, cross-cultural ministry has been part of its charter. With the great flow of people into Australia from all over the world – every second person in Australia is either a first- or second-generation immigrant – the challenge of ministering cross-culturally is on the doorsteps of many Australian congregations.
A Handbook for Cross-Cultural Ministry explores how to raise awareness of cross-cultural ministry. It examines how people from different cultural backgrounds may be fully included in church life, appreciate that cultural diversity can enrich the whole community. It suggests how support may be given to faith communities of people from different cultural backgrounds.
Far from taking a ‘one size fits all’ approach, A Handbook for Cross-Cultural Ministry describes the emergence of several patterns, highlighting their strengths and weaknesses. The book reflects on the current status of cross-cultural ministry within our churches and the role of such ministry in the context of the changing nature of Australian society.
This book shares ideas and stories that emerge from a survey of more than 300 local church leaders and interviews with ministry coordinators in eight denominations. Each section contains questions to facilitate discussion about cross-cultural ministry by church leadership teams. We believe this book will inspire churches to think through the potential for cross-cultural ministry and provide leaders with some ideas, practical possibilities and insights.
The book was written by Philip Hughes and Sharon Bond, and commissioned by the Victorian Council of Churches.
The Catholic Community in Australia, by Bob Dixon.
This book, written by Bob Dixon, director of the Pastoral Projects Office of the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference, provides an excellent overview of the Catholic community in Australia.
It traces the history of the Catholic community from the First Fleet to the present day. It looks at the complex organisations and activities that make up the Catholic Church. It examines how the richness of its traditions increased through the arrival of Catholic immigrants from many countries during the second half of the twentieth century. It gives a brief account of the major Catholic beliefs and religious practices, and notes both the achievements of the Catholic Church and the challenges it faces in the years ahead.
Drawing extensively on the 2001 Australian Census and the 2001 National Church Life Survey, The Catholic Community in Australia provides a detailed demographic profile of both the Catholic community in general and of those who are active in Church life.
Fr Brian Lucas, the General Secretary of the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference says ‘This book provides an excellent and comprehensive account of the Catholic community in Australia. Packed with the latest available statistics, it is an absorbing read.’
Religion in an Age of Change, edited by Peter H. Ballis and Gary D. Bouma.
Religion in an Age of Change contains a variety of papers exploring contemporary expressions of religion and spirituality in a rapidly changing world.
The chapters in this book were originally given as lecturers at the Gippsland Campus of Monash University. They include:
– Sociology and Theology in the Re-imaging of God, Gary Bouma
– The Future of Faith: Where Poetry and Science Meet Rufus Black
– Journeys in Christian Feminist Theology Robyn Schaefer
– Religion and Dissent Steve Russell
– Teenagers and Religious Education Kath Engebretson
– Clergy at the Crossroads P. Harry Ballis
– Leadership issues facing Catholic Education Therese D’Orsa
– Church and the Electronic Culture Peter Horsfield
– New Religious Movements in Australia Rowan Ireland
Many Religions, All Australian: Religious Settlement, Identity and Cultural Diversity, edited by Gary Bouma.
Quietly, with comparatively little drama, a large number of very different religious groups came and settled in Australia, becoming part of the landscape, part of Australian life and society. As these groups have settled in they have come to be accepted such that now Australian society can be described as having many religions, all Australian. Hence the title, Many Religions, All Australian.
We know something of the process through which individual immigrants come to be Australians, but how do religions become Australian? This question is addressed by the concept of religious settlement as developed in this book. Not only does Australia have many religions, but these religions have become or are becoming Australian.
One of the unintended consequences of post-war immigration to Australia has been a dramatic alteration in the religious profile of this society as several religious groups have settled in substantial numbers. Part of becoming multicultural has involved becoming religiously plural. Coping with, adjusting to and finally celebrating this religious diversity has involved a great deal of quiet effort on the part of many Australians in religious organisations, in social agencies and governmental departments. The result has been a peaceful transition from a time in which one religious group dominated the religious culture of Australia to a time in which power, legitimacy and influence are shared among a wide variety of Christian and other religious groups. In this process religious groups have come to see themselves as part of Australia, indeed as Australian.
Australia is a success story of religious settlement involving highly diverse religious groups. Other nations have been less successful in achieving as peaceable, productive and cooperative a religious environment. This is not because Australia has become increasingly secular, because in many ways religion is more important, more on the agenda now than before. Reasons for this successful transition include the Australian institution of giving others a ‘fair go’, Australian experiences in the 19th century with religious sectarianism, 20th century ecumenism, the Australian pattern of funding primary and secondary education, and a history of resolving conflict by reference to courts of law. The framework provided by Australia’s civic values of tolerance, equality, and freedom of speech and religion together with the structures of constitutional parliamentary democracy and the rule of law have worked together to enable this transition.
The newly emergent religious diversity in Australia presents challenges including justice and equity issues related to religion-based harassment, and discrimination. A cautionary note is sounded regarding the excesses of some religious groups. The book concludes with a set of recommendations from the team of contributors. While Australia is well on its way to a productive and cooperative religiously plural society, more effort and continued watchfulness is required to ensure that this trend continues and is not wound back by misguided majoritarianism.
Many Religions, All Australian is published by the Christian Research Association assisted by a grant from Monash University. It is the result of a research project conducted by the World Conference on Religion and Peace supported by a grant from the Bureau of Immigration, Multicultural and Population Research.
Sowing and Nurturing: Challenges and Possibilities for Rural Churches, by Philip Hughes and Audra Kunciunas
This small book explores the challenges currently facing many rural churches. It explores possible answers to the issues such as where they can find suitable leadership? How do they effectively engage younger people who remain in rural areas? How can they give hope in difficult times? Options are presented to stimulate discussion, generate ideas and encourage reflection on the nature and life of the rural churches.
This book was developed out of research with Anglican, Catholic, Lutheran and Uniting churches in rural areas.
The book is very suitable for use by church councils. Contact the CRA for a special price for bulk orders.
Responding to Need: A study of selected church-based counselling services in Melbourne, by Vivienne Mountain
Responding to Need describes the variety of counselling services offered by local churches in Melbourne. The stories of formation and the ongoing experiences of staff provide positive illustrations of what churches can do to live out Gospel values through interaction with their local communities. This book will be of interest to those currently working in church-based counselling services or local churches looking at starting such services.
Building Stronger Communities, by Philip Hughes, Alan Black, Peter Kaldor, John Bellamy and Keith Castle.
This is a practical book that looks at ways Australian communities can be made stronger. Written in an accessible style for a wide audience, it offers useful principles and pointers for students, community workers, community leaders, policy makers and ordinary citizens.
The book is underpinned by recent Australian research, including two major surveys, as well as the authors’ many years of experience working with different types of communities in a variety of settings, including directly with community groups and social agencies as well as in academia. It is distinguished from comparable volumes by its extensive consideration of communities of interest and not just communities based on locality.