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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1959.3/27972
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- 'Confessing their faith' : an enquiry into the meaning which Anglicans confirmed as adults give to their confirmation and the place which confirmation has in their faith journey
- Savage, Ian D.
- The purpose of this research was to discover what meaning adult candidates for Anglican confirmation gave to their confirmation, how they experienced the ritual and what place confirmation had in their continuing faith journey. The research report retells the stories of eight adults. The stories of four are presented as case studies. The baptism/ confirmation stories of all research participants are presented as metaphors, a form of 'systematic thematic analysis' (Plummer 1983). For the study I adopted a life history, case study approach (Jones 1983; Plummer 1983; Minichiello et al. 1995) drawing on the insights of ritual theory (Turner 1969, 1972, 1976) and the concept of transitional phenomena proposed by Winnicott (1965, 1971). Two sets of contextual factors formed the background to the study: the Church's tradition and its debates about confirmation and the attitudes of lay people about their faith and about the Church. The research method involved a grounded theory approach. The principal data creation techniques were in-depth interview and the Faith Autobiography pro forma. Following the initial interviews, each research participant was sent a summary of the research findings (Summary of themes). The Summary gave the metaphors which emerged from the interviews, together with brief notes on the concepts used to interpret the data. Responses from the research participants were incorporated into the final form of the metaphors: Belonging to myself, Returning/ Starting over, Growing up, Joining the family and Making a commitment. Most research participants did not regard baptism/confirmation as joining the Church: rather they saw themselves as belonging to the Church already; neither were they concerned with becoming Anglicans. For the majority, the transition they made in baptism/confirmation paralleled another life transition which was taking place or was expected to take place. Taking part in the research helped form the participants' ideas about baptism/confirmation. While the catechumenal process is able to provide a holding environment in which candidates for baptism/confirmation can explore the transitions in which they are involved, the initiation liturgy should reflect the 'return' motif which emphasises incorporation as well as the traditional Exodus motif which emphasises separation.
- Publication type
- Thesis (DOrgDyn)
- Research centre
- Swinburne University of Technology. Faculty of Business and Enterprise. Australian Graduate School of Entrepreneurship
- Publication year
- Anglican Church; Anglican Communion; Church of England; Confirmation; Liturgy; Organisational behaviour; Rituals
- Australasian Digital Theses collection
- Copyright © 2004 Ian David Savage.
- Thesis Supervisor
- [Lynette Willshire]
- Thesis Note
- [Submitted in fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Professional Doctorate in Organisation Dynamics, Swinburne University of Technology, 2004.]
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