The Expression of Congregational Identity in the Church of the Nazarene As Seen through the Cultural Lens of Age

Joseph Bell, Olivet Nazarene University

Ed.D. dissertation completed in 2010 for Olivet Nazarene University.


This dissertation documents the expression of congregational identity as seen from the 60 to 68, and the 20 to 28 age cultures within a local Church of the Nazarene, in the Midwest United States. Researched are whether issues of concern are issues of congregational identity, or culture; what one cultural group may encounter when their expression of congregational identity challenges another cultural group; and how congregational identity can be better maintained across cultural lines. This qualitative, Grounded Theory, study used three focus groups. Developed are four test questions to clarify congregational identity and culture; 14 categories of conflict which impact these cultures when congregational identity is expressed; and three recommendations for this congregation to maintain congregational identity across cultural lines.