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Research Methodology: Church Growth Strategies

research method

This chapter discusses the research methodology used by the researcher to carry out the investigation. The chapter covered the research design, area of study, population of the study, sample and sampling techniques, instrumentation, administration of instrument, and method of data analysis. The research method used in this research is the survey research method.

3.1      Research Design

This study will make use of correlational survey design. The correlational survey design is interested in establishing the relationship between two or more variables in relation to the population. This research chose the correlational survey to determine or indicate the magnitude and the direction of the relationship between the independent variable, church growth strategies such as small groups, empowering, passionate spiritual, discipleship and perfecting, and gifts oriented strategies and the dependent variable church growth.

 

3.2      Area of Study

The area of study is Ebonyi State. According to the information obtained from the records of the Christ Commission Mission, Abakaliki, Ebonyi state, the church has seven (7) branches throughout Ebonyi State.

Ebonyi State is one of the States in southeastern Nigeria with its capital city located in Abakaliki. The state has three (3) senatorial zones and thirteen (13) Local Government Areas. Its estimated land area is about 5533 square kilometers with an estimated population of about 2,176,947 people, who are predominantly of Igbo origin.

3.3      Population of Study

The target population of the study comprised of 1491 subjects made up of members of the Christ Commission Mission, Ebonyi State. The choice of the population of the church throughout Ebonyi State is because they have been in the church and have observed how the church has grown. Both members and ministers of the church are part and partakers of the growth of the church within its branches throughout the state. The pastors and ministers usually have interactions with both members and non-members of the church. The extent of interaction and contributions towards the growth of the church is known and understood by both ministers and members of the church. The table below shows the population distribution of the different branches of the church in Ebonyi State.

Table 3.3.1: Population Distribution of CCM, Ebonyi State

S/N

Branch

No. of Ministers

No. of Members

Total

1

Abakaliki 1

7

321

328

2

Abakiliki 2

5

242

247

3

Afikpo 1

5

205

210

4

Afikpo 2

4

187

191

5

Unwana

4

164

168

6

Ishielu

3

189

192

7

Ohaozara

3

152

155

 

TOTAL

31

1460

1491

 

3.4      Sample and Sampling Techniques

The sample of the study comprised 250, made up of 31 ministers and 219 members in all the branches of the church in Ebonyi State out of a population of 1491. All the ministers in the church were included under the sample. A simple random sampling technique will be used in choosing the members from the different branches of the church. 15% of the members’ population in each branch will be selected. This is done by randomly selecting a member from the pool of members in each branch. The sample used in tabulated below:

Table 3.4.1: Distribution of Ministers and members samples

S/N

Branch

No. of Ministers

No. of Members

Total

1

Abakaliki 1

7

48

55

2

Abakiliki 2

5

36

41

3

Afikpo 1

5

31

36

4

Afikpo 2

4

28

32

5

Unwana

4

25

29

6

Ishielu

3

28

31

7

Ohaozara

3

23

26

 

TOTAL

31

219

250

 

3.5      Instrumentation

3.5.1 Instrument for data collection

The instrument for data collection is a researcher constructed questionnaire tagged: “Analysis of Church Growth Strategies in the 21st Century” (ACGSC). The questionnaire is categorized into two sections, A and B. Section A obtained information on the personal data of the respondents, while section B elicited information on church growth strategies. The respondents, namely ministers and members are expected to indicate their level of agreement on the impact of church growth strategies. The questionnaire has a four-point scale or strongly agreed (SA), Agree (A), Disagree (D), and strongly disagree (SD) and weighted (4), (3), (2), and (1) respectively. The respondents are expected to select one of the four-point scales on each statement that relates to the church growth strategies.

3.5.2 Validity of the Instrument

The questionnaire will be given to the researcher’s supervisor and other academics in education administration, planning, measurement, and evaluation for necessary corrections in order to ensure face validity. In addition to the face validity, the instrument was content validated by item analysis, and that ensured that each item seeks the information it supposed. That is to say that by item analysis, the researcher ensured the representativeness of sampling adequacy of the content – the substance, the matter, the topic of the measuring instrument. The comments and suggestions of the experts who validated the instrument will be incorporated while producing the final draft of the questionnaire.

3.5.3   Reliability of the Instrument

The reliability of the instrument will be determined using the test-retest method. By this method, a trial test will be done using twenty members and five ministers from the Abakiliki branch of the church. The questionnaire will be collected and scored. After two weeks, the same questionnaire will be re-administered to the same respondents. The two sets of tests will be computed statistically, using the Pearson Product Moment Correlation Co-efficient (PPMCC). The reliability of the instrument will be found at between 0.7 and 0.99 levels. This will be considered a useful level for the study.

3.6      Administration of Instruments

The copies of questionnaires will be administered personally to the respondents by the researcher and some trained research assistants who will be trained on how to validate a response. Personal administration of the instrument ensured a high return rate against the mailing system which may not guarantee a high return rate. It will also help to clarify some points in the questionnaire which may appear unintelligible or prove difficult for the respondents to understand. Also, personal administration will help instrument mortality by well allowing the respondents to get acquainted with the research assistants.

 

3.7 Method of Data Analysis

The data captured for this study will be analyzed, using descriptive statistical methods. The descriptive analysis involves the use of simple percentages, and tabulations where the respondents shall choose between Agreed, Strongly Agreed, Disagreed, and Strongly Disagreed.

 

Appendix

Department of _______________

school name

Date: ……………… 2020.

 

Dear Respondent,

I am a student of the above-named institution, writing my dissertation on “Analysis of Church Growth Strategies in the 21st Century.” Please, kindly respond to the questions as you deem fit, and be assured that any information you give shall be treated with the utmost confidentiality and only for the purpose for which it is obtained.

Thank you.

Read the questions and tick (Ö) to the one suitable to you: Agreed (A), Strongly Agreed (SA), Disagreed (D), or Strongly Disagreed (SD).

 

Name of student

 

 

 

QUESTIONNAIRE

SECTION A

BIODATA

 

  1. Sex Male [    ]                     Female [    ]

 

  1. Branch            _________________________________

 

  1. Education: FSLC              [    ]

Secondary       [    ]

Tertiary            [    ]

Post Tertiary    [    ]

  1. Occupation: Student           [    ]

Self-employed [    ]

Civil Servant   [    ]

Clergy                         [    ]

  1. Status: Pastor/Minister            [    ]

Worker                        [    ]

Member                       [    ]

 

 

 

QUESTIONNAIRE

SECTION B

  1. What church growth strategies are being implemented in your church?

S/N

STATEMENT

A

SA

D

SD

1

Small group units, e.g. house fellowship is adopted by our churches

 

 

 

 

2

Growth by empowering lay leaders through support, motivation, and mentorship

 

 

 

 

3

Through special spiritual practices called passionate spiritual

 

 

 

 

4

Growth through evangelism and discipleship of members

 

 

 

 

5

Gift oriented strategy which focuses on identifying the spiritual gifts of lay leaders

 

 

 

 

 

  1. How have these church growth strategies impacted to the numerical and spiritual strength of your members?

S/N

STATEMENT

A

SA

D

SD

1

There has been an increasing number of souls won to the church

 

 

 

 

2

The church has planted and established more churches due to these strategies

 

 

 

 

3

The church has developed Godly leaders that are helping in championing the affairs of the church

 

 

 

 

4

The church has been able to penetrate unreached communities and made an impact in the lives of people

 

 

 

 

5

The evangelism arm of the church has become stronger and more focused

 

 

 

 

 

  1. What are the merits and demerits of these church growth strategies?

S/N

STATEMENT

A

SA

D

SD

1

The small group strategy has been inefficient because members’ material and spiritual needs are not usually met

 

 

 

 

2

The strong leadership strategy is inefficient due to the lack of visionary leaders

 

 

 

 

3

The church growth strategies have won more members that are not spirit-filled but canal

 

 

 

 

4

The growth strategies have tremendously influenced the faith of members and potential church leaders

 

 

 

 

5

The enthusiasm of members gradually ways down as the time of implementation of some strategies lengthens

 

 

 

 

 

  1. Which of these church growth strategies is most effective for a healthy church? Note: A healthy church grows in all areas, including physical, spiritual, financial, etc without lagging at other areas.

S/N

STATEMENT

A

SA

D

SD

1

The small groups’ strategy creates a healthy church in our branches

 

 

 

 

2

The empowering strategy is more efficient in creating a healthy growth

 

 

 

 

3

The passionate spiritual strategy leads to a better healthy growth

 

 

 

 

4

Discipleship and perfecting strategy has produced more excellent result in our churches

 

 

 

 

5

The gift oriented strategy is more suitable for a healthy church as observe from our branches within Ebonyi state

 

 

 

 

 

 

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