Non-fiction

‘Negotiating Identity: The Christian Individual and the Secular Institution’, in Entering the New Theological Space: Blurred Encounters of Faith, Politics and Community

Entering the New Theological Space

Entering the New Theological Space

Edited by Revd Dr John Reader and Dr Christopher R. Baker, William Temple Foundation, University of Manchester, UK

  • Published: May 2009
  • Format: 234 x 156 mm
  • Extent: 256 pages
  • Binding: Hardback
  • ISBN: 978-0-7546-6339-3

This book presents theological reflections on the changing nature of church mission and Christian identity within a theology of ‘blurred encounter’ – a physical, social, political and spiritual space where once solid hierarchies and patterns are giving way to more fluid and in many ways unsettling exchanges. The issues raised and dynamics explored apply to all socially-produced space, thus tending to ‘blur’ that most fundamental of theological categories – namely urban vs. rural theology.

Engaging in a sharper way with some of the helpful but inevitably broad-brush conclusions raised by recent church-based reports (Mission-shaped Church, Faithful Cities), the authors examine some of the practical and theological implications of this research for the issue of effective management and therefore church leadership generally.  Speaking to practitioners in the field of practical theology as well as those engaged in theological and ministerial training, key voices encompass dimensions of power and conflict, and identify some of the present and future opportunities and challenges to church/faith- based engagement and leadership arising from blurred encounters.

Contributors – practitioners and theorists – cover a wide spectrum of interdisciplinary professional contexts and academic/denominational interests. Contributors include: John Atherton, John Reader, Helen Cameron, Martyn Percy, Malcolm Brown, Karen Lord, Clare McBeath and Margaret Goodall.

‘Negotiating Identity: The Christian Individual and the Secular Institution’, chapter 9, 127-141.  Excerpt from the introduction:

The renegotiation of Christian identity within secular culture is also the theme of Karen Lord’s chapter, but argued from the perspective of faith-based individuals seeking to express their religious identity within secular workplaces. This highly topical debate uses both psychology of religion theory and recent high-profile legal case studies involving the right to wear religious symbols at work. The chapter concludes by recognising the frequently painful complexity involved in trying to handle the multitude of identities now offered within diversified and pluralised societies, and the importance of negotiating face-to-face with the person behind the mask.

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Quantifying implicit religion : a critical assessment of definitions, hypotheses, methods and measures

by Karen A. R. Lord

Dissertation: Thesis (Ph. D.) — Bangor University (Theology and Religious Studies), 2008

Summary

This dissertation evaluates the feasibility of a measure for implicit religiosity, and adapts an existing measure of religiosity to examine the presence of implicit religiosity among music and sports science students.  Scales from the adapted measure are tested for reliability, and the resulting data are compared to data from similar research on religiosity.

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Implicit Religion: A Contemporary Theory for the Relationships between Religion, State, and Society

Author: Karen Lord
DOI: 10.1080/13537900701823011
Publication Frequency: 3 issues per year
Published in: Journal of Contemporary Religion, Volume 23, Issue 1 January 2008 , pages 33 – 46
Formats available: HTML (English) : PDF (English)

Abstract

This article demonstrates that the term ‘implicit religion’ provides an effective way to explore some of the philosophies and ideologies common to church, state, and society and to explain the mutual influence of traditional religion, civil religion, and folk religion in the creation of a national identity. Examples of church-state interactions from three continents are provided and variations in the definition of a national church are discussed. The effect of these variations on cross-cultural studies in religion, state, and society are assessed. The article concludes by examining the potential of the construct of implicit religion for bridging the different historical and cultural understandings of religion.

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Implicit Religion: Definition and Application

ISSN 1463–9955 IR 9.2 (2006) 205–219

Karen Lord

Implicit Religion, Vol 9, No 2 (2006)

Abstract

This article provides a foundational definition of implicit religion, using the characteristics identified by the research of Edward Bailey, and examines the applicability of this construct as a research tool in the analysis of religious behaviour. Types of implicit religion and their relationship to concepts such as civil religion, folk religion, invisible religion and wild religion are discussed, demonstrating that the boundaries of religion are not objectively defined. The paper concludes by recommending the construct of implicit religion as a tool to gain a new perspective on the study of religious behaviour.

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Examining the usefulness of the construct of implicit religion to explain and understand disestablishment in Barbados and Wales

by Karen A R Lord

Dissertation: Thesis (M. Phil.) — University of Wales, Bangor (Religious Studies), 2005.

Summary

Three cases of disestablishment campaigns are studied: the disestablishment of the Anglican Church in the West Indies by the British Government, and the subsequent re-establishment of the Church in Barbados by the Barbadian Government; the disestablishment of the Anglican Church in Wales; and the disestablishment of the Anglican Church in Barbados.

The dissertation is divided into two parts.  Part one focuses on the construct of implicit religion and how it relates to the relationship between Church, State and society.  Part two of the dissertation contains in-depth analyses of the three disestablishment campaigns.  Explicit religion as expressed by the established Church is compared and contrasted with marginalised or implicit expressions of religious identity.  The tendency of ruling groups to define religion for both the society and the State, thus setting the boundaries between explicit religion and implicit religion, is discussed. The dissertation concludes by considering the implications of these findings for the question of the definition of implicit religion, and for the expression of national and religious identity in a heterogeneous society.

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