A memorial service for Deborah Bruce, research manager for the Research Services office of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) and one of the foremost religious researchers in North America, will be held Tuesday, July 17 at 11:00 a.m. in Caldwell Chapel at Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary here.

Bruce, 57, died July 11 of complications from a stroke. She was stricken at her home here July 7 and never regained consciousness. Bruce had just returned from the PC(USA)’s 220th General Assembly in Pittsburgh ― where she presented the latest findings from her research ― when she was stricken.

Bruce was project manager for the monumental U.S. Congregational Life Surveys conducted in 2001 and 2008 to measure and analyze significant changes in congregational life in this country. It was the largest congregational survey ever conducted.

She and her close friend and colleague Cynthia Woolever, who served as director of the surveys, have written three books based on the surveys, including the seminal A Field Guide to U.S. Congregations: Who’s Going Where and Why. A fourth book, Leadership That Fits Your Church: What Kind of Pastor for What Kind of Congregation, is due out this fall.

She is survived by her husband, Reginald Bruce; parents Wendell and Jo Ann Mohr of Gaithersburg, Md.; siblings Vincent Mohr of Spencerport, N.Y., Cynthia Mohr and Pamela Cosimano of Gaithersburg, and Bradley Mohr of Seattle. 

Please pause at 11:00 a.m. (EDT) Tuesday and say a prayer for Deborah and those who loved her. She was one of the truly good ones.