Original Research

Educating Anglicans: A case study investigating group work in the Church of England

Roger Grainger
In die Skriflig/In Luce Verbi | Vol 48, No 1 | a1784 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/ids.v48i1.1784 | © 2014 Roger Grainger | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 25 November 2013 | Published: 10 December 2014

About the author(s)

Roger Grainger, GST Academic Board and holding the Permission to Officiate (PTO), Anglican Diocese of Wakefield, United Kingdom and Faculty of Theology, North-West University, Potchefstroom Campus, South Africa


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Abstract

The dominant form of group work in the Church of England is educational and directive. An investigation was carried out to determine whether other forms of group work could be valuable for the Church in addition to this approach. The same group of nine members, members of two Church of England parishes in the North of England, were involved in 12 sessions of group work, four sessions of each of the three types of group structure, in order for them to report their individual reactions to each type. An Interpretive Phenomenological Analysis (IPA) showed that all three kinds of groups drew attention to four principle areas of comment. In all these kinds of groups, belonging, safety, enrichment and personalvalidation, with each one of the three groups scoring more highly than the other two on one or other of these dimensions. No group showed itself as more directly educational than the others, showing that, for church educational purposes, a range of group structures maybe used as actual learning comes from the experience of group membership itself. Using the qualitative research model of IPA, an investigation was carried out into the principal themes emerging from members’ self-reports concerning their experiences of the three different group structures, revealing four value constructs – belonging or alienation, safety or danger, enrichment or impoverishment and validation or rejection – which played a dominant role in all three kinds of groups. Taken together, each of the three group structures gave a different degree of prominence to each of the four evaluative constructs so that each of the three was shown to be particularly relevant for, and associated with, a particular area of experiential learning.

Die onderrig van Anglikane – ’n ondersoek na groepwerk in die Kerk van Engeland: ’n gevallestudie. Die belangrikste vorm van groepwerk in die Kerk van Engeland is opvoedkundig en rigtinggewend van aard. ’n Ondersoek is gedoen na die waarde van bykomende metodes van groepwerk. Dieselfde groep van nege lede uit twee gemeentes in die Noorde van Engeland, was by die 12 groepwerksessies betrokke – vier sessies vir elk van die drie tipes groepstrukture – om hulle in staat te stel om hulle onderskeie reaksies op elkeen van die tipes groepstrukture te rapporteer. ’n Interpretiewe fenomenologiese analise het aangetoon dat al drie tipes groepstrukture die soeklig op vier hoofkenmerke laat val het, naamlik om te behoort, veiligheid, verryking en bevestigingvan eiewaarde. By elke groep het een of meer van hierdie kenmerke swaarder geweeg as by die ander twee groepe. Geeneen van die groepe het opvoedkundig meer as die ander uitgestaan nie, wat bewys dat ’n reeks groepstrukture vir kerklike opvoedkundige doeleindes gebruik kan word, aangesien leer in wese uit die ervaring van die groeplede self kom. Met behulp van die kwalitatiewe navorsingsmodel van die interpretiewe fenomenologiese analise is ondersoek ingestel na die hooftemas soos blyk uit die lede se individuele verslae ten opsigte van hulle ervaring van die drie verskillende groepstrukture. Die verslae het vier waardekonsepte openbaar wat ’n dominante rol in al drie tipes groepe gespeel het, naamlik om te behoort of te vervreem, veiligheid of gevaar, verryking of verarming, en bevestiging van eiewaarde of verwerping. Samevattend blyk dat die drie groepstrukture elkeen ’n ander graad van prominensie aan die vier verskillende waardekonsepte toeken sodat elke groep spesifiek relevant is vir en geassosieer word met ’n spesifieke area van ervaringsleer.


Keywords

education; discipleship; directive groupwork; process-oriented groupwork; art-based groupwork

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