INTRODUCTION

Church and science can seem like separate worlds, but scientists appear in pews and pulpits across the UK. At ECLAS, we work to affirm the work of these faithful scientists and all who bring their vocation in science to the church, both as members and active friends of congregations. We want to help them create spaces of engagement, build confidence and competence around scientific issues, and foster thoughtful, prayerful communities working in the world.

Over the next two years, ECLAS will provide funds and resources for projects that creatively change the conversation between the church and the scientific world, projects that develop a deeper engagement with scientists, theologically, pastorally, or in mission. Building on previous rounds at ECLAS as well as successful programmes in North America and Scotland and supported by a grant from the Templeton Religion Trust, we are offering £20,000 each to 20 congregations to host these projects and shepherd follow-up projects for one or more additional congregations.

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PROJECT CRITERIA

What Kind of Projects?

Scientists in Congregations (SiC) projects start with an established relationship between a local church leader and a professional scientist. The latter may be a member of the congregation, a colleague, or even a friend, but someone who has already engaged in conversation around faith and science. Together, they will propose a creative project that involves a local congregation and invites the public more broadly.

Past projects have included art installations, science fairs, plays, workshops, and lecture series. Noteworthy examples include Messy Church (and a follow-up focused on AI), the Ely Cathedral Science Festival commemorating the moon landing (“The Sky’s the Limit”), and Riding Lights Theatre Company’s production using the character of Job to tackle questions in faith and science (“The Faith in the Questions”).

The programme is set up to work with a strategic church that has strong ties with local communities. Up to £10,000 supports a primary activity at that location. Up to £10,000 more supports a follow-on project, which might reproduce the activity in another congregation, adapt it for a different context, train leaders for similar activities, or develop resources for broader engagement.

SiC projects draw on networks already in place, including understanding of the local context and support from senior leadership in the congregation and denomination. They reach out to a wider community making new connections and fostering creative approaches grounded in scientific and theological expertise.

Do you have a creative idea for engagement? We encourage you to contact us and talk through the details. If you have a scientist-congregation relationship in place and want to do more, contact sciencein.congregation@durham.ac.uk.

HOW TO APPLY

To apply, fill in the application form and submit by email to sciencein.congregation@durham.ac.uk by 23rd April 2021, 17:00 GMT.

Proposals will be evaluated by ECLAS team members as well as expert advisors in science, theology, and communication. Awards will be announced in July 2021.

FUNDED PROJECTS

The following projects have been funded by our Scientists in Congregations awards scheme.

2019
hidden text Granta Park – Science-Faith Lectures

Abington Church, Ely, Cambridgeshire

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hidden text Science-Faith Related Videos for Café Church

Amberly Baptist Church, Bristol

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hidden text Genesis for the 21st Century

Chester Cathedral

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hidden text MES-AI Church

Croxley Green Baptist Church, Hertfordshire

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hidden text Connect@Tiviot Dale

Stockport, Manchester

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hidden text The Sky’s the Limit!

Ely Cathedral Science Festival 2019

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hidden text “Our Fragile Earth”

Churches in Sidmouth, Devon

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hidden text “Science and the Language of Prayer”

Bramhall Methodist Church, Manchester

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hidden text The Sacrament of Science? Comprehending the wonder, mystery and awe of science in an Anglo-Catholic congregation

St. Thomas' Church, Exeter, Devon

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2018
hidden text Living With and Loving Machines

Manchester Cathedral

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2017
hidden text Messy Church Science

Bible Reading Fellowship

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hidden text Church Scientific

Baptist churches, Leeds

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hidden text Crossing the Gap

St. Matthew’s Church, Harwell and All Saints’ Church, Chilton

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hidden text ‘From Dinosaurs to DNA’

Ely Cathedral, Science Festival

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hidden text Water of Life: Our Faith and a Changing Climate

Parish of Honley with Brockholes, West Yorkshire, in partnership with the University of Huddersfield

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hidden text Sing of God and Science

All Saints, Teversham, Cambridge

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hidden text Science and Theology: Walking Through Nature

Trinity church, Lewes

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hidden text Re:Think Worcester

Encouraging Scientists in Congregations to Engage in the Science and Faith Debate

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hidden text From Enlightenment to Entanglement

Derby Cathedral project in partnership with University of Derby

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hidden text Faith, Technology and Tomorrow

St Mary’s Church Longfleet, Poole, Dorset

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hidden text Faith in the Questions: Counting the Clouds

Riding Lights Theatre Company, St Michael le Belfrey, York

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hidden text Saddleworth Science Faith Festival

Saddleworth Churches

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hidden text Messy Church Does Science: Bible Reading Fellowship LEARN MORE
hidden text Duw a’r Glec Fawr – God and The Big Bang

South Wales

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hidden text Faith in the Questions: Counting the Clouds

Riding Lights Theatre Company, UK Tour

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hidden text Debunking the Myth: Empowering Young People to be Christians in Science

St Andrew’s Church, Bishopthorpe and the Archbishop of York Youth Trust

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hidden text Exploring Science and Christian Faith in a Rural Setting

Tyne Valley, west of Newcastle and Gateshead

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hidden text On Common Ground

Exeter Cathedral, Lent Course

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hidden text Science and Christianity: Bridging the Imaginary Divide

Christians in Science, South West

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2016
hidden text Cathedral Isle of Man LEARN MORE
hidden text Grace Church, Truro LEARN MORE
hidden text Confident Christian Engagement with Science

St John’s, Lindow, Wilmslow, Cheshire

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hidden text Take Your Vicar to the Lab

St Albans Diocese

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CONTACT US

For more information or an informal chat, email Despina Katsidou on sciencein.congregation@durham.ac.uk

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