**UPDATE** The official paper is now released & available online!I recently attended a lecture from a researcher about the gap between research being done and research being used. It was a great reminder to me of the importance of having useable information when you're out in the real world. It has also inspired us to make sure that the data we have gathered from our own research is a practical tool where it might be needed.
Generally when qualitative ("descriptions of") research is conducted, it's with a small group so it can inform bigger quantitative ("amounts of") studies. When we first decided to conduct our independent research, there was little to no data out there to actually inform a quantitative study.
Which is why we chose to do a descriptive study to explore the question "Does ministry impact the families of Australian clergy workers?" One of our main goals was to inform future, larger studies.
We were expecting 30 responses. We received 281. 936% more than we anticipated.
This means we have a huge wealth of information, in fact more than we originally anticipated! We have spent the last 18 months reading, analysing, exploring and translating these experiences into data that can help answer this question.
With such a huge wealth of insight, we have decided that that the best way to gain the most from it is to create a two-part series which we will be releasing this year. Both parts will be available free-of-charge so everyone can access these insights as freely as they were given to us.
Part One: This will be our official research paper. It will answer the question 'Does Ministry Impact the Families of Australian Clergy Workers' specifically relating to home use, church culture, and clergy family support. It will include summaries, statistics, and top responses or patterns to our 19 survey questions.
Part Two: This will be a series of articles exploring the responses from different groups to questions. For example, "What are the top 5 things clergy kids wish people had known about them?", "How would clergy families like to be supported by their churches?" or "The pros and cons of ministry at home for clergy families" Rather than a 150-page long article, we want to make these easy-to-read articles available over the course of 6 months.
We are coming to the close of our final paper. As soon as we have more details we'll let you know and invite you to the official release! This research is part of our ongoing conversation about clergy family life. We'll be hosting a public lecture releasing our paper as well as an online webinar. If you'd like to receive a copy of the results, please email Rachel at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.australianclergyfamilies.com/publications.
We want to send a huge thank you to the 281 people who participated in our survey. Without you we could not have a solid research base to make this study happen.
~ Rachel & Matt
www.australianclergyfamilies.com -- a community of support & encouragement for those in ministry