Products Page

Pointers Vol.19-1 For Downloading

Pointers Vol 19-1 (March 2009)
Articles include :
  • Leadership in Rural Churches – Over the past 12 months, the Christian Research Association has undertaken a study of organisation and leadership in rural Anglican churches. Five case-studies have been conducted, each of a different kind of leadership and organisation. This article discusses the pros and cons of the various patterns.
  • Door to Door Evangelism
  • Research and Reflections on Rural Church Life in England – The Church of England has produced a range of materials on rural church life and the Christian responses to rural issues. As a demonstration of its commitment to rural research, the Church of England has contributed one full-time national officer to the Arthur Rank Centre, Warwickshire. The Arthur Rank Centre is a partnership between the Royal Agricultural Society of England, the Rank Foundation and the churches working in rural England and is focussed on equipping the rural church. A variety of materials for rural churches is available on their website: http://www.arthurrankcentre.org.uk
  • Leading with our Strengths: Empowering Others – Wherever communities of people exist, leadership exists – or needs toexist. But how do you create, or contribute to, “good” leadership? And what might it look like? NCLS Research has seen that inspiring and empowering leadership is a key factor in developing vital and growing churches. Using data from the Church Life Surveys, they have been exploring the kind of leadership that can make a positive difference to building stronger communities, organisations and churches.
  • Religion and Occupation – What is the most religious occupation? This paper looks at the links between religion, occupation and industry sector and suggests some reasons why people in some occupations are much more involved in churches than others.

Price: $6.00

Loading Updating cart…

Pointers Vol.19-2 For Downloading

Pointers Volume 19-2 (June 2009)
Articles include:
  • All Melbourne Matters – Research of the Church in Melbourne – The Christian Research Association, together with the organisation ‘Transforming Melbourne’, has released a series of 32 reports on the churches and communities in greater Melbourne. The research utilised data from the 2006 National Church Life Survey (NCLS), additional supplementary surveys undertaken by Transforming Melbourne and the Christian Research Association, and the 2006 Australian Census of Population and Housing, along with special sections written by a variety of church leaders and other researchers. As part of the project two different types of reports were written:
    • a Citywide Report looking at the greater Melbourne area as a whole and,
    • extended reports on each of the 31 local government areas.
  • The Reports (Citywide and LGA) – The report for greater Melbourne provides a comprehensive picture of its population and the nature and activities of its 1720 churches. Many people have contributed to the report, which shows the variety and quality of congregational life and its many activities in education, health and social welfare. It covers house churches through to the regional churches. The great diversity of Melbourne’s population is described and future trends are plotted. The report was written as a basis for strategic thinking about mission and ministry, and it puts a number of challenges clearly before the churches. Containing more than 100 A4 pages, it is available from the Christian Research Association for $75 including postage.
  • De Facto Relationships – One of the most significant changes over recent years in the structures of families has been the increase in de facto relationships (where two people live together as a couple and are not married), and the public acceptance, or at least tolerance of these relationships. While the majority of partnered people are married, it is rare to find a family today in Australia in which one of the adult children is not in, or has not been in, a de facto relationship. The Census data confirms the prevalence of people ‘living together’, particularly among young people. The exceptions are usually where the bride and groom are committed members of conservative denominations, such as Pentecostal churches which have a younger age profile and a stronger proscription on sexual relationships before marriage.
  • Marriage Within and Outside the Religious Group – Most people look for life partners who share their values and their approach to life. For many people, this means looking for people who have similar  religious or spiritual values. Nevertheless, the numbers of people who marry people of the same religious group varies greatly in Australia: from 36 per cent among those who identify with nature religions to 94 per cent of those who identify with Islam.
  • What Social Factors Contribute to Divorce – Mariah Evans and Jonathan Kelley have just published a paper on the social factors which contribute to or protect against parental divorce,that is, divorce of  parents of children. The paper is based on the analysis of 27,386 cases in the International Social Science Program surveys between 1984 and 2002. The paper was published this year in the International Journal of the Sociology of the Family.
  • Transforming the Quality of Relationships – In the various studies reviewed in this edition of Pointers, we have seen how religious groups discourage de facto relationships and divorce and how they encourage people to marry within the religious group. We have noted that some religious groups exercise greater influence on their members than do other groups.

Price: $6.00

Loading Updating cart…

Pointers Vol.19-3 For Downloading

Pointers Vol.19-3 ( December 2009)
Articles inclue:
  • Religion and Ethnicity – More than one-fifth (22%) of all people resident in Australia at the time of the 2006 Census were born overseas. Seventy-one per cent were born in Australia, and a further 7 per cent did not answer the question. This article explores the impact that migration has had on Australia’s religious profile.
  • USA or Europe: Who is Setting the Trend for the Future? – Is the USA or Europe setting the trend for the global future of religious faith? This has been a contentious issue for decades. In Europe, some commentators describe the trend as ‘secularisation’ in which religion gradually loses its place in society and in people’s ways of thinking, to be replaced by non-religious organisations and ways of thinking. It has been described as an inevitable process rooted in the nature of modernity. Commentators in the USA have responded by arguing that the problem of the lack of vitality of religion in Europe is just the lack of plurality of religious options and the absence of a competitive spirit. There is no fundamental reason why religion in Europe should not be as vital as it is in the United States if European countries allowed the competition that comes from a plurality of religious groups, it has been argued. This debate has been the topic of recent books by major thinkers in the world of the sociology of religion such as Peter Berger, Grace Davie and David Martin. The discussion continued in July 2009 at the conference of the International Society for the Sociology of Religion held in Santiago,  Spain.
  • The Civil Wedding Option – One of the most significant impacts on marriage celebration in Australia was the introduction of a broader civil marriage option in 1973. Previously, couples desiring a civil marriage were mainly confined to an official Registry Office. From 1973, authorised marriage celebrants could conduct weddings in parks, homes and a variety of non-church settings, usually with a style that met the needs of the couple. In 1973, 83.6 per cent of marriages were conducted by religious celebrants. Civil marriages have outnumbered religious ceremonies since 1999 when 51.3 per cent of all marriages were performed by civil celebrants. In 2008, the trend toward civil ceremonies continued, with 65.0 per cent of marriages performed by civil celebrants.
  • Snapshots of Migration and Church Attendance – The 2006 National Church Life Survey asked all participating church attenders about their country of birth.
    • Seven in ten church attenders were born in Australia (72%)
    • Three in ten church attenders were born elsewhere (28%)
    • The percentage of migrants in church life is similar to the percentage in the wider Australian population (26% born elsewhere)

Price: $6.00

Loading Updating cart…

Pointers Vol.19-4 For Downloading

Pointers Vol.19-4 ( December 2009)

Articles Include:

  • Religion and Education – Does a university education destroy a person’s religious faith? The Census data from 2006 suggests that it is certainly not destroying the faith of Buddhists, Hindus, Jews, Muslims or Sikhs. It does show that highly educated people in Australia identify less with the Christian faith than does the rest of the population.
  • Education and the Church – Australia is becoming an increasingly educated nation. The 2006 National Church Life Survey results show that church attenders are also becoming more educated. But how do the two compare? How educated are church attenders in comparison to the nation, and what impact does this have on church ministry?
  • Spiritual Development of Young People – In 2008, the CRA was part of an international project to explore the spiritual development of young people organised by the Search Institute of the USA. The Search Institute Inventory of Youth Spiritual Development was designed in the USA and conducted in a number of countries around the world. The CRA organised the survey in both Australia and Thailand.
  • Recent Publications in the Religion-and-Film FieldFollowing the success of “Recent publications in the religion-and-film field” in Pointers (2008, vol. 18, no. 3), below is an updated compilation of 2008-2009 items (and selected others) for your further interest, enjoyment and edification.

Price: $6.00

Loading Updating cart…

Pointers Vol.20-1 For Downloading

Pointers Vol.20-1 (March 2010)

Articles Include:

  • Climate Change and the Human Spirit – Environmental problems,  such as pollution and global warming, are seen as the greatest threat to  the future of the world, according to young people surveyed in Australia, United Kingdom and Thailand. At the popular level, awareness of  environmental issues has grown and there is widespread awareness that this threat is the most critical ever faced by human beings. It was also a  major topic at the Parliament of the World’s Religions, held in Melbourne in December 2090. It  was noted that climate change and environmental  pollution have their roots in the human spirit, and will not be solved  simply by new technology or by spending a lot of money. The problem must also be addressed by the world’s religions as a spiritual concern. Sectarianism in Australia – A new book by the Anglican priest Dr. Benjamin Edwards, WASPS, Tykes and Ecumaniacs, sketches the long history of sectarianism in the Australian cultural scene. A brief survey of 1788 to 1947 notes the deep cleavage in colonial society between the Irish Catholic community and the mainstream British Protestant and Anglican society. This cleavage, as Edwards amply illustrates, lies deep in the memories of many older Australians (ch.1). Edwards also points out that it has been the theme of many novels, films, comedy sketches and  television sitcoms, ensuring its enduring place in popular culture (ch.2).
  • Review of Chaplaincy in State Schools – The first chaplain was appointed to a government school in 1955. Since that time, chaplaincy has become more common in State schools around Australia. However, chaplaincy in State schools has grown hugely in the last 3 years from around 650 to more than 1870 chaplains.
  • Counselling and the Church – The client-based approach to counselling which emerged in the 1960s and 1970s was something of a threat to traditional religious establishments. It suggested that people would come to wholeness through inner reflection and self-direction rather than through the teaching of an external body. The tension between these two approaches was particularly strong in the Catholic Church, and is well illustrated in Opening Up: a History of the Institute of Counselling by David Bollen.
  • Satanism – In the 1996 Census, 2091 people in Australia identified themselves as Satanists. In 2001, the number was down to about 1800, but rose again in the 2006 Census to 2248 people.
  • Which Churches Use Email? – There have been extraordinary
    technological advances in the ways that people communicate with each other. Are there some churches that are more likely to  embrace these trends and use new electronic methods to communicate with attenders? In the 2006 National Church Life Survey churches were asked about  their email and internet use.

Price: $6.00

Loading Updating cart…

Pointers Vol.20-2 For Downloading

Pointers Vol.20-2 (June 2010)

Articles Include:

  • Are Australians ‘Losing Their Religion’? – New data, gathered late 2009, provides a new comprehensive picture of the religious faith and spirituality of Australians. The data is part of the International Social Science Survey (ISSP) program and involved surveys of 1718 adult Australians. It is the best picture we have had of the religious faith and spirituality of the Australian population since the Wellbeing and Security Survey of 2002 conducted by Edith Cowan University, Deakin University, Anglicare and NCLS Research. Indeed, this new survey repeats a range of questions asked in 1993 and 1999, giving us an excellent picture of changes over time.
  • Factors in Declining Church Attendance – The number of Australians attending church services is declining. Data from the ISSP (International Social Survey Programme) shows that, between 1993 and 2009, the proportion of Australians attending a service of worship monthly or more often dropped from 23 per cent to 16 per cent. Occasional attendance (less than monthly) also dropped from 42 per cent to 36 per cent. In turn, the proportion claiming they never attend services of worship rose from 33 per cent to 43 per cent. What might be some of the underlying factors and transitions influencing these trends?
  • Power and the Churches – In the 2009 International Social Science Program (ISSP) survey just released, 42 per cent of Australian respondents indicated that churches and religious organisations had ‘about the right amount of power’ and 37 per cent indicated they had ‘too much power’ or ‘far too much power’. In addition, 78 per cent ‘agreed’ or ‘strongly agreed’ that religious leaders should not influence how people voted, and 71 per cent that religious leaders should not influence government. What implications does this have for Christianity’s underlying principles of social justic ? Do these figures suggest that churches and religious organisations the Australian public wants the churches to remain silent on issues?
  • Is the End Nigh? Print based ReligiousPublications in Australia – In 1992, the CRA published a special section in the annual Yearbook for Australian Churches, which focused on religious periodicals. There were about 220 religious periodicals, including a handful from coordinating agencies of the major non-Christian religions. There is now a much wider diversity of periodical and web publications from Jewish, Islamic and Buddhist communities in particular, and also notably there has been development of inter-faith publications. A follow-up article in Pointers considered some of the issues facing the Christian press at the time, with five major points outlined.

Price: $6.00

Loading Updating cart…

Pointers Vol.20-3 For Downloading

Pointers Vol.20-3 (September 2010)

Articles Include :

  • 25th Anniversary Dinner Speech – 2 September 2010  Speech by Rev Dr Bruce Kaye
  • CRA: Chair’s Report 2010 – Rob Steed, chair of the board of the Christian Research Association at the 25th Anniversary
    Dinner
  • CRA: Staff Report 2010 – Philip Hughes, Senior Research Officer of the Christian Research Association speaking at the 25th Anniversary Dinner
  • Shaping Australia’s Spirituality: the Conference – Between 31st August and 3rd September 2010, 140 people met in Glen Waverley, Victoria, to review the ministries of the churches in the contemporary context. Thirty-five people were involved in  presenting research, and leading plenary and small group  discussion on the various aspects of Australia’s ministry. Each of the four days examined a separate topic. The first day looked at the national picture of Australia’s spirituality and the ways in which the churches have a national impact. The second day focussed on children and young people, examining the churches’ ministries through church activities, schools and chaplaincies. The third day examined the scene in relation to family, workplace, community and health. The fourth day focussed on the spirituality of the churches. The following is a brief summary of some of the major themes in the discussion, arranged in terms of reflections on context and on ministry.
  • How We Make Sense of Life Does Matter – Spirit Matters, by Peter Kaldor, Philip Hughes and Alan Black,was launched at the “Shaping Australia’s Spirituality” conference in Melbourne on 31 August 2010. Subtitled How Making Sense of Life Affects Wellbeing, it presents an in-depth analysis of national surveys undertaken in Australia on wellbeing, religion, spirituality and how we make sense of life. The book argues that there are significant links between how we make sense of life and our personal and societal wellbeing.
  • Third Edition of Australia’s Religious Communities Launched – The Third Edition of the Australia’s Religious
    Communities CD-Rom (ISBN 978-1-87522369-5) was launched on at the CRA 25th anniversary dinner by Dr Trevor Batrouney, a researcher at the now defunct Bureau of Immigration, Multicultural and Population Research which originally commissioned the CRA to produce a series of 12 books on the major religions of Australia. The third edition has been fully revised. All statistics have been up-dated, using the latest Census and survey data. All the text has also been reviewed and
    up-dating has occurred throughout this encyclopedia of religion in Australia.

Price: $6.00

Loading Updating cart…

Pointers Vol.20-4 For Downloading

Pointers Vol.20-4 (December 2010)

Articles include:

  • Global Religious Trends – The religious trends occurring in Australia are not typical of the rest of the world. The Atlas of Global Christianity, a new book from the Centre for the Study of Global Christianity, plots the global trends.
  • Lausanne Congress 2010 – October 2010 saw Australian Christians on the move. Just in front of me in the passport queue was a nun on her way to Rome to celebrate the canonisation of Sr Mary Mackillop. I was heading in a different direction: to Cape Town, South Africa, for the third Lausanne Congress on World Evangelization. Since 1974, the Lausanne movement has brought together Christians from around the world to focus on mission and evangelism. It has been a global movement of evangelicals, inspired by the world mission of Billy Graham and John Stott. The third Lausanne Congress involved around 4200 selected participants from around the globe.
  • Attitudes to the Variety of Religions – The First European Settlers to Australia thought of Christianity as the only ‘civilised’ religion and had no interest in the religions of Chinese miners, Hindu peddlers or Islamic Afghan camel drivers. Since the 1970s, attitudes to other religions have changed markedly. The Australian Survey of Social Attitudes (2009) provides the most recent perspective.
  • Who Reads the Bible? – The Bible Society of South Australia, Scripture Union, YouthWorks, the Lutheran Church and The Salvation Army are currently sponsoring a study of Bible reading among young people. The CRA is currently visiting youth groups around Australia talking with young people about their attitudes to the Bible, their reading habits (if any), the catalysts and the hindrances for reading, and how they interpret the Bible. As a prelude to this study, the CRA re-visited the  research it has done on young people in the Spirit of Generation Y Project (2002 to 2008) and the associated Schools Spirituality Project. It summarised the results of that earlier research in relation to Bible reading. The full report can be found on the CRA website. Here is a summary of the findings.
  • Attitudes to Issues of Sexuality – In revising the materials for the 3rd edition of Australia’s Religious Communities CD-Rom, we discovered some interesting patterns in the changing attitudes to issues of sexuality amongst Australians.
    As might be expected, Australian adults have become more accepting of pre-material sex and homosexuality. However, in relation to extra-marital sex, Australians have become less accepting. This suggests that while Australians usually move into a de facto relationship before marriage, they take faithfulness in marriage very seriously.

Price: $6.00

Loading Updating cart…

Pointers Vol.22-1 For Downloading

Pointers Vol.22-1 (March 2012)

Articles include:

Is the ‘New Atheism’ influencing Australians?
There is little evidence from surveys of the Australian population that the ‘New Atheists’ are having widespread impact on people becoming atheist.For a detail account of Australians belief in God, and the factors inhibiting belief, see the first article

Changes in Beliefs and Attitudes to Life Among Students
Responses to surveys of 4100 students in Catholic schools in 2011 can be compared with students responses to surveys conducted between 2005 and 2008.

Being Faithful in Diversity
A series of lectures by Gary Bouma, published by ATF Press in a small book Being Faithful in Diversity, explores the challenges of faith in a multi-faith society.

Celebrating the Canonisation of Mary MacKillop
In May 2011, CRA researchers interviewed 14 students who had travelled to Rome for the canonisation. Eight months on, the interviews found that the students remained very enthusiastic about the event.

Attitudes to Abortion and Approaches to Ethical Issues
15% of Australians say that abortion is always or almost always wrong. Younger people are more likely to accept abortion than older people. However, the views of those who attend church are vastly different with 56% of them saying that abortion is always or almost always wrong.

Price: $6.00

Loading Updating cart…

Taking Holistic Education Seriously

Taking Holistic Education Seriously
by Philip Hughes and Stephen Reid

ISBN: 978-1-875223-73-2

This paper shows how schools can and do contribute to the holistic education of their students.  Holistic education is defined by this paper in terms of the development of people’s relationships with themselves and their friends, and a development of a commitment to the wider society, the natural environment and religious faith. Based on surveys in 29 Catholic schools in four dioceses and two States, it suggests ways in which schools can measure and assess their influence.

Product Options
Combination of product variants is not available

Price: from $6.00

Loading Updating cart…