Presbyterians are active in promoting compassion, peace, and justice in their communities and are supportive of most national Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) ministries that promote these values. Majorities have personally engaged with the best known of those national ministries.

These are findings from the August 2010 Presbyterian Panel survey on compassion, peace, and justice ministries.  

During the past year, majorities of members, elders, pastors, and non-parish ministers have prayed for healing for themselves or others; talked with a friend or family member about conflict in another country; intentionally changed their lifestyle to lower its impact on the environment; volunteered in their community to promote compassion, peace, or justice; and contributed money or materials for disaster relief, hunger relief, or development.

Majorities of members, elders, pastors, and non-parish ministers also rate as “very important” or “important” the work of the following ministries of the Compassion, Peace and Justice ministry area the General Assembly Mission Council:  Child Advocacy; Environmental Ministries; Presbyterian Disaster Assistance; Presbyterian Health, Education and Welfare Association; Presbyterian Hunger Program; Presbyterian Peacemaking Program; and Self-Development of People.

Majorities of Presbyterians in all four groups are “very familiar” or “familiar” with Presbyterian Disaster Assistance (PDA), and at least one-third are “very familiar” or “familiar” with the Presbyterian Hunger Program.

During the past two years, majorities in all four groups have engaged with PDA and the hunger program by attending an event led by program leaders, contacting program leaders, or reading or viewing printed or online materials of the program.

“Presbyterians work hard to promote compassion, peace, and justice, and they value what the denomination does in those areas,” said Perry Chang, Presbyterian Panel administrator in the PC(USA)’s Research Services office. “Many have talked with staff or read materials from ministries such as PDA and the hunger program.”

Every three years the PC(USA) Research Services assembles representative samples of Presbyterian church members, elders, and ministers who respond to questions on different topics quarterly. Known as the Presbyterian Panel, these randomly chosen respondents provide a vital means for church leaders to learn the opinions of rank-and-file Presbyterians.

For more information about Panel surveys and other Research Services studies and services, visit the Research Services website.

The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) comprises more than 2 million members in more than 10,000 congregations, answering Christ’s call to mission and ministry throughout the United States and the world.

Information for this story furnished by Research Services.