Developing empathy from storytelling in the congregational diversity of Church for the Highlands / by John Henson.
JOHN HENSON DEVELOPING EMPATHY FROM STORYTELLING IN THE CONGREGATIONAL DIVERSITY OF CHURCH FOR THE HIGHLANDS Under the direction of Robert N. Nash, Jr., Ph.D. The focus of this project thesis is on how members of Church for the Highlands, a congregation of pronounced diversity, can move from awareness and acceptance of one another to mutual understanding and a deeper level of relationships. The diversity, age and pace of missional activity create a challenge for members when it comes to deepening self-awareness of commonality. This project is concerned with how the practice of storytelling can produce empathy among members of Church for the Highlands and can become a sustainable practice to help the church experience commonality. The research involves a qualitative method and use of a focus group to determine how storytelling creates empathy in the focus group members who attended three storytelling events. An assistant moderator recorded notes and responses of focus group members on a matrix chart for both the pre and post-events session. The data was interpreted using Micro-interlocutor analysis. The conclusion of the project is that the focus group members who attended the storytelling events and heard the stories were able to empathize with the storytellers. Various methods of storytelling were utilized and all provided opportunity for listeners to develop empathy.
Henson, John Craig