Tyndale Professor Awarded Grant to Study Flourishing Congregations

By Tyndale Communications  /  Wednesday, November 4, 2020

Dr. Mark Chapman

The Council for Christian Colleges and Universities (CCCU) awarded a research group that includes Dr. Mark Chapman, Director of Tyndale University’s Doctor of Ministry program, and his team an initiative grant for a project entitled “Flourishing Congregations in Canada.”

The research application explains:

Congregations play an important role in serving communities and the people they interact with as sources of human, social, and spiritual capital. Research is clear that when congregations flourish, its members and neighbourhoods also tend to flourish.

The key questions the project seeks to answer are:

  1. What are the mechanisms, pathways, and processes that contribute to congregational flourishing?
  2. How does congregational flourishing intersect with individuals, neighbourhoods, and organizations where churches interact?

The research group involves six researchers (including Dr. Chapman) from different Canadian universities that will conduct case studies in their geographic locations and cooperate on data analysis and writing. The CCCU case studies will contribute to a larger Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) funded project on flourishing congregations that includes additional case studies in the same locations and survey data collected by the main leadership team.

“COVID-19 is requiring a re-think of data collection protocols, but some possible approaches will include analysis of social media, electronic participant observations, development of congregational history, interviews, and so on,” says Dr. Chapman. “This project is a team effort that will intersect with the SSHRC project run out of the Flourishing Congregations Institute at Ambrose University.”

The team from Tyndale includes (in alphabetical order): Xenia Chan, Marilyn Draper, Michael Krause, Tabitha Mui, Narry Santos, Peter Schuurman, Tim Tang, James Watson, and potentially others.

Congratulations Dr. Chapman and team!