Christian Education Programs in Mainline Protestant Denominations

Project Number: 
Start Date: 
Tue, 04/01/1986
End Date: 
Wed, 12/31/1986

In 1985, the Search Institute engaged in a feasibility study on mainline Protestant church education, in which five major denominations participated. This project continued that foundational work in two ways. First, Benson and the other researchers reviewed current literature on church education, held project proposal meetings to secure representative commitments and educated denominational executives on the nature of the study. Second, they devised the rationale and philosophy that would govern the final three-year study. During this project, they ran a pilot study that focused on 20 congregations (the final study would engage 80). Through surveys and interviews, they probed the current needs, issues, trends, and social and cultural context of mainline Protestantism, comparing and contrasting the findings with what church education programs offered. Their efforts resulted in a single, comprehensive plan to engage the massive re-examination of mainline Protestant church education.(MG)