Durham Conference September 2018

Ecclesiology and Ethnography Conference 2018 This is the annual conference for the network bringing together scholars working on ethnographic approaches to ecclesiology.


September 11, 2018 - 11:00 am


September 13, 2018 - 1:30 pm


St John's College, 3 South Bailey, DH1 3RJ   View map

Ecclesiology and Ethnography Conference 2018

 *New* Draft Timetable Below


This is the annual conference for the network bringing together scholars working on ethnographic approaches to ecclesiology. It is is a wide ranging conference, and part of the joy is discovering a diversity of specialisms and learning.  Past papers have included ethnography, anthropology, systematic theology, ecclesiology, practical theology and social science approaches.  Attendees range from professors to local ministers and this is an excellent place to present as a post graduate or early career researcher, or as a pastor/scholar in ministry.  Learning is generously shared and critiques are supportive.  We encourage single and multi-authored papers.  All papers are to be circulated prior to the event to enhance conference conversations and interaction. Established scholars, doctoral students as well as pastor/scholars working in church settings are welcome to propose papers.

If you are interested in proposing a paper, please click here to find more information and a proposal form.

The Conference is run in association with The Department of Theology and Religion and St John’s College, Durham University and is based in St John’s College, in the centre of historic Durham. Our meals and accommodation will also be within the college. There will be the usual folk music evening on 12th September.  A limited number of en-suite rooms are available, allocated on a first come, first served basis.  Please email avril.c.baigent@durham.ac.uk  with any dietary restrictions that you may have. If you require an additional night of accommodation, please email Sue Hobson at the college directly at s.l.hobson@durham.ac.uk. Please also let Sue know if you will be arriving later in the evening.  St John’s College is about a fifteen minute walk from Durham Rail Station. From Newcastle airport you can ride the Metro to Newcastle Central Station, where you can find frequent trains to Durham. Otherwise, you can book a car with Airport Express to take you from the airport directly to St John’s College.

Booking is now open: please click here to register.


Draft Timetable

Tuesday 11th September

11.30 am: Arrivals, Tea and Coffee

1.00 pm: Lunch

2.00 pm: Plenary Session (60 Minute Papers) Leech Hall

  • Full paper 1: Nicholas M. Healy // An Inductive Ecclesiolology: Pneumatological Tension
  • Full paper 2: Marten van der Meulen // The challenge of embedding ecclesial innovation: the difficult process of moving towards a mixed economy model for the Dutch Protestant Church.

4.00 pm: Tea

4.30 pm: Track Sessions (45 Minute Papers)

Room 1 Leech Hall

  • Birgitte Lerheim // Godparenship now and then – a diachronic presentation
  • Paul S. Fiddes // Inheritance and performance: observing baptism, affirmation of faith and eucharist in an Anglican church in Oxford

Room 2 Tristram Room

  • Rein Brouwer  // Ecclesiology post-Kester Brewin
  • Nigel Rooms // Understanding Local Churches as Porous Systems: Insights from the Tavistock Tradition

Room 3 Wallis Room

  • Jennifer Kryszak // “Displaying the Spirit of Revolution: The Sisters of St. Joseph, Liturgical Art, and a Mission for Unity”
  • David G. Ford // A Case Study of English Catholics Engaging with Scripture

6.00 pm: Evening Meal

7.00 pm: Seminar Session (30 Minute Papers)

Room 1 Leech Hall

  • Mathew Ndambuki Musyoki // Can the Kenyan Church open up objectively to LGBT realities?
  • Jamys Carter // Women in ministry: an exploration in Pentecostal hermeneutics and methodology
  • Jackson Wolford // Structures and Subjects: Prospects for Ethnography in Balthasar

Room 2 Tristram Room

  • Jasper Bosman // The Lord’s Supper in Reformed Churches: Self-examination, Reconciliation, and Community as Contested Concepts?
  • Benjamin Aldous // ‘Liturgy emerges from a wound’ initial observations of developing ecclesial life from an ethnographic study of the Community Supper at St Peters, Mowbray
  • Fokke Wouda // Eucharistic sharing in ecumenical contexts. Learning from monastic communities.

Room 3 Wallis Room

  • Audrey Seah // Narratives in Deaf Roman Catholic Worship and Implications for Liturgical Inculturation
  • K.S. Tamminga // Encountering Strangers: How Disability Inclusion Re-forms Church Members
  • Knut Tveitereid // Thinking theology fast and slow. The pace of theological reasoning in ministerial training after the empirical turn


Wednesday 12th September

8.00 am: Breakfast

9.00 am: Plenary Session (60 Minute Papers) Leech Hall

  • Full paper 3: Ruth Perrin // Trajectories of British, Emerging Adult Faith
  • Full paper 4: Tanya Riches  // Universal and Contextual: Marketing and Meaning in Hillsong’s Worship Music

11.00 am: Coffee

11.30 am: Track Session (45 Minute Papers)

Room 1 Leech Hall

  • William D Foster // Doing Ethnographic Ecclesiology: Findings and Reflexive considerations on a 6 year study
  • Henk de Roest // Collaborative ethnography: origins, developments and prospects for practical theology

Room 2 Tristram Room

  • Roger Jensen // Pilgrimage, past and present. Norwegian perspectives with emphasis on Santiago De Compostela.
  • David J. McCollough // The Liminal Spirit: Ritual Experience in Luke’s Presentation of Early Christian Ecclesiology

Room 3 Wallis Room

  • Anthony J. Stiff // Toward a Liturgical-Missional Ecclesiology: Wisdom from case studies with four congregations in North America
  • Alan Le Grys, Krystin Zigan, & Ying Fei Héliot // Implied Leadership and Followership Theory: the view from ’below’

1.00 pm: Lunch

2.00 pm: Seminar Session (30 Minute Papers)

Room 1 Leech Hall

  • Yoshua Budiman Harahap // “From Immunity to Community”. Some Reflection of Moslem to Christian Conversion and Church’s Role in Christian Churches of Java (GKJ) as Minority Religious Groups
  • Easten Law // One in Three? Weaving a Single Story in Three Gatherings: Exploring the Ecclesiological Implications of a “Liturgy of Conversation” in a Multi-Site Urban Church Model in Baltimore, Maryland
  • Hans Riphagen // Being a Christian in Lunetten: The Construction of a Missional Identity

Room 2 Tristram Room

  • Paul Houston Blankenship // Wounds of Love: Christian Spirituality, Suffering, and Homelessness
  • Joseph McColligan // A dis-ease of homelessness in the domiciled Church: A phenomenological examination of the homeless body of Christ
  • Hilary J. Scarsella // Interpretive Authority in Traumatic Circumstances: Theology and Method

Room 3 Wallis Room

  • Teresia Derlén // Farmer’s Belief and the Historian’s Woe: Method and Research of 17th Century Swedish Popular Belief
  • M.J. Kaljouw // Understanding the historic city church building: towards a socio-spatial approach
  • Chigemezi-Nnadozie Wogu // Denominational Heritage: Between Preservation and Innovation

3.30 pm: Tea

4.00 pm: Seminar Session (30 Minute Papers)

Room 1 Leech Hall

  • Carolynn Pritchard // An Ethnographic Study of the Easter Vigil through the Lens of Play
  • Monica McArdle // Word Made Flesh: An exploration of the practice of Lectio Divina through the use of somatic bodily awareness.
  • Laura Tennenhouse // New Monasticism as Reflexive Spirituality: A Case Study of the Simple Way

Room 2 Tristram Room

  • Heather Major // Struggles with Boundaries and Balancing Life in Immersive Autoethnographic Fieldwork with Rural Churches: A Reflective Case Study
  • Dorte Kappelgaard // Creating A Safe and Challenging Space – a Study of Self-Reflexivity among Church Development Consultant in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Denmark

Room 3 Wallis Room

  • Jon Kara Shields // Identifying Pastoral Functions for Healthy Consensus Culture in Congregations
  • Eleanor Course // Theologies of Culture in Hull, City of Culture 2017

6.00 pm: Evening Meal


Thursday 13th September

8.00 am: Breakfast

9.00 am: Track Session (45 Minute Papers)

Room 1 Leech Hall

  • Christian Scharen // After Laura: Post-Colonial White Practical Theology, Reflexivity, and Reparations
  • Eduardo Erazo Acosta // Contribution of Catholic Liberation Theology in the music of liberation, decolonial in comparative perspective

Room 2 Tristram Room

  • Arne Olsson // Renewal – Rejection – Reconciliation. A study of vitalization movements and ecumenical development in five Swedish municipalities 1970–2015
  • Hans Schaeffer & Stefan Paas // Christian Churches in Amsterdam: An Interdisciplinary Study of Their Culture, Spirituality, and Mission

Room 3 Wallis Room

  • Helen Cameron & Christopher Button // Faithful Welfare: An initial outline for developing a theological reflection on the social security system in the UK
  • Chris Greenough // Undoing Theology through Queer Ethnography.

10.30 am: Coffee

11.00 am: Plenary Session Leech Hall

  • Full paper 1: Elina Hankela // Ethnography as a means of teaching liberation theologies
  • Full paper 2: Pete Ward // Exploring The Affective Gravitational Pull of the Church

1.00 pm: Lunch


Dates for next year: 10-12 September 2019

Conference Organising Group

Prof. Pete Ward, Durham University, NLA University College, Bergen and MF The Norwegian School of Theology, Dr Knut Tveitereid, NLA University College, Bergen, Avril Baigent, PhD student, Durham University.

Conference Advisory Group

Prof. Paul Fiddes, Oxford University, Prof. John Swinton, University of Aberdeen, Dr Tone Kaufman, MF The Norwegian School of Theology