The Centre’s research programme responds to the pressing need for the Church to be equipped, theologically and strategically, for its mission and ministry in urban contexts.

Our conversations with partner churches and other practitioners indicates an appetite for (1) a more holistic account of the mission of the urban Church – and how it responds faithfully to the call to care for its neighbours, work with them for social justice and share the faith, and (2) a more strategic deployment of the resources of the Church for mission in urban contexts – so that its investments and property, and above all the time of its congregations and their ministers is used most fruitfully.

In response to this need, the Centre is producing three series of pamphlets:

Theology for the Local Church

This is a series helping local churches reflect on their mission, and linking such reflection to practical action (click to open PDF)

1 – Just Church: Local congregations transforming their neighbourhoods

2 – God and the Moneylenders: Faith and the battle against exploitative lending

3 – Grassroots Theologies of Inter Faith Encounter

Research for the Local Church

This is a series which presents research findings about the areas within which the church operates and also about how the church is responding to those. Our aim is to inform churches’ reflection on their mission – what it is and how it should be done

1 – Taking back the streets: Citizens’ responses to the 2011 riots

2 – Churches Collaborating for Urban Mission: Learning from the Shoreditch Group

3 – Our Common Heritage: Housing associations and churches working together

4 – Deep Calls to Deep: Monasticism for the City; Experiences from East London

5 – Love, Sweat and Tears: Church Planting in east London

Community Organising and the Local Church

1 – Heart to Heart: Community Organising and the Power of Storytelling for Churches

2 – Marching Towards Justice: Community Organising and The Salvation Army

Relating across religious difference

Relating Across Religious Difference is a network of scholars and researchers whose work engages with religious diversity, including relations between people of different religious identities and persuasions, and relations between these plural identities and the public sector. The network is convened by Dr Julia Ipgrave (Roehampton University) and CTC Director Canon Dr Angus Ritchie. More here…

Contending Modernities: Christian, Muslim, Secular

Since 2008, the Centre has been working with the University of Notre Dame to explore the ways in which Christian participation in broad-based community organising helps churches to witness faithfully in a multi-religious society. The first phase of our research, Just Communities: Christian witness in a pluralist society, included a series of seminars with Rowan Williams, Tariq Ramadan and Luke Bretherton – bringing their work into dialogue with local practitioners, and generating resources for local practitioners.

In the second phase of the programme, we are testing out the concept of ‘rooted cosmopolitanism’ by looking at how and why Christians, Muslims and non-religious people work together in community organising – with a particular focus on the way recent migrants and more settled communities discern and negotiate a common good. The outputs of the programme include academic papers and a conference – as well as resources for Christian and Muslim congregations involved in community organising, and a forthcoming book.


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