Research on Multiracial Congregations that Does Not Yet Exist ~ Praxis Habitus - On Race Religion & Culture

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Friday, April 20, 2012

Research on Multiracial Congregations that Does Not Yet Exist

I recently revisited an article I wrote published in 2010.  It struck me that the title of this brief article does not anticipate that nearly one-third describes the type of research we need on multiracial congregations that does not yet exist

Research on Multiracial Congregations that Does Not Yet Exist

First, we should expand more widely the scope of “diversity” examined in diverse congregations to more actively incorporate a broader scope of cultural experiences and ancestral backgrounds.
Second, we should pursue a more inclusive range of diverse congregations and avoid treating “multiracial churches” as a homogenous category; clearly, they are not.
Third, we should focus more attention on non-Christian congregations. 
St. Martin's Episcopal ChurchSt. Martin's Episcopal Church (Photo credit: joseph a)
Fourth, we should isolate significant arenas of diversification and investigate contemporary initiatives for diversification (and rigorous research will likely identify intriguing ironies and contradictions).
Fifth, we should exercise greater caution in our use of racial and ethnic categories as well as become better prepared for working through new and changing “multiracial identities.”
Finally, we should expand the use of multiracial churches as strategic arenas for data collection to address other interesting and important social dynamics.   

These suggestions--with expanded discussion and a number of relevant citations from research research--can be found here.
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