Publications and Reports

Disclosing Church: An Ecclesiology Learned from Conversations in Practice

This book is a direct follow up to Talking About God in Practice: Theological Action research and Practical Theology, authored by one of the original researchers, providing a systematic analysis of the impact of the “theological action research” methodology and its implications for a contemporary ecclesiology.  The book presents an ecclesiology generated from church practice, drawing on scholarship in the field as well as the results of the theological action research undertaken. It achieves this by including real scenarios alongside the academic discourse. This combination allows the author to tease out the complex relationship between the theory and the reality of church.

Addressing the need for a more developed theological and methodological account of the ARCS project, this is a book that will be of interest to scholars interested not only Western lived religion, but ecclesiology and theology more generally too.

Watkins, C. (2020) Disclosing Church: An Ecclesiology Learned from Conversations in Practice (Explorations in Practical, Pastoral and Empirical Theology). London: Routledge

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Watkins, C. and Shepherd, B. (2014). The Challenge of ‘Fresh Expressions’ to Ecclesiology: Reflections from the Practice of Messy Church. In: Ecclesial Practices 01 Jan 2014.  Volume 1: Issue 1. Pages: 92–110 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1163/22144471-00101005

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Researching Practice in Mission and Ministry: A Companion

This book is written for people engaged in ministry and mission, who wish to research either their practice or aspects of the Church and world that provide the context for their practice. The three purposes of this book are to demonstrate:

  1. how to design research that enables questions about practice to be answered;
  2. how to understand the underlying approach or methodology of research;
  3. how to manage a piece of research as a project alongside other responsibilities.

Cameron, H. and Duce, C. (2013) Researching Practice in Mission and Ministry: A Companion. London: SCM

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Talking About God in Practice: Theological Action Research and Practical Theology

This is the first book-length treatment of the ARCS project. Action Research: Church and Society was initiated by the Pastoral and Social Studies Department of Heythrop College, University of London in 2006. One year in, the project became a collaboration with the oxford Centre for Ecclesiology and Practical Theology at Ripon College, Cuddesdon, a Church of England Theological College. This book reports two main outcomes. First, a methodology called theological action research, and second, a model for theological reflection, called the four voices of theology.

Cameron, H., Bhatti, D., Duce, C., Sweeney, J. and Watkins, C. (2010) Talking about God in practice: theological action research and practical theology. London: SCM