U.S. Congregational Life Survey, Wave 2, 2008-2009, Random Sample Congregational Profile Survey
CitationWoolever, C., Bruce, D., Kopacz, J., & Smith-Williams, I. (2021, May 3). U.S. Congregational Life Survey, Wave 2, 2008-2009, Random Sample Congregational Profile Survey.
SummaryOver 500,000 worshipers in more than 5,000 congregations across America participated in the U.S. Congregational Life Survey (Wave 1 and Wave 2)- making it the largest survey of worshipers in America ever conducted. Three types of surveys were completed in each participating congregation: (a) an attender survey completed by all worshipers age 15 and older who attended worship services during the weekend the survey was given; (b) a congregational profile describing the congregation's facilities, staff, programs, and worship services completed by one person in the congregation; and (c) a leader survey completed by the pastor, priest, minister, rabbi, or other principal leader. Together the information collected provides a unique three-dimensional look at religious life in America. (From Appendix 1, U.S. Congregational Life Survey Methodology, A Field Guide to U.S. Congregations, Second Edition).
This data file contains data for the Random Sample of congregations that completed the Congregational Profile Survey form in Wave 2. (U.S. Congregational Life Survey Wave 2 Random Sample Attender data, Leader data, and Associate Leader data will be provided in separate data files.)
The ARDA has added five additional variables to the original data set to enhance the users' experience on our site.
Data FileCases: 251
Weight Variable: WEIGHT_A, WEIGHT_B
Data CollectionFall 2008 and Spring 2009
Original Survey (Instrument)USCLS Wave 2 Congregational Profile
Funded ByThe Lilly Endowment, Inc.
Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)
Collection ProceduresSelf-administered surveys
Sampling ProceduresThe second sample (Wave 2) was identified and recruited by Harris Interactive. Of 1,330 congregations nominated and verified in the Wave 2 sample, 201 agreed to participate (15% of congregations) and 148 returned completed worshiper surveys (73% of those that agreed). Worshipers in these congregations completed 38,468 surveys. Of the congregations participating for the first time in 2008, 145 returned completed congregational profile surveys. Congregations in the national random sample that participated in 2001 (Wave 1) were also invited by Harris Interactive to take part in Wave 2. In 2008, Harris Interactive verified and located 411 of the 434 congregations that participated in Wave 1. Of these, 145 agreed to participate in Wave 2 (35% of congregations), and 108 returned completed surveys from their worshipers (74% of those that agreed). These congregations returned 26,206 completed attender surveys. Of the congregations repeating in 2008, 106 returned completed congregational profile surveys.
In Wave 1 and Wave 2, denominations were also invited and encouraged to draw a random sample of their congregations. Denominational samples were large enough so that the results are representative of worshipers and congregations in each denomination. This allows denominations to compare their "typical" congregation and worshiper to congregations and worshipers in other denominations. Denominations participating in this oversampling procedure in Wave 1 and Wave 2 were Church of the Nazarene, Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), Seventh-day Adventist Church, United Methodist Church (UMC), and United Church of Christ (UCC). In Wave 2, the Church of God (Cleveland, Tennessee) also participated by surveying a national random sample of their denomination's congregations. (From Appendix 1, U.S. Congregational Life Survey Methodology, A Field Guide to U.S. Congregations, Second Edition).
Principal InvestigatorsCynthia Woolever, Research Services, Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), co-principal investigator
Deborah Bruce, Associate Research Manager, Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), co-principal investigator
Joelle Kopacz, Research Assistant, Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)
Ida Smith-Williams, Associate for Information, Research Services, Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)
Related PublicationsA Field Guide to U.S. Congregations: Who's Going Where and Why. Second Edition. 2010. Cynthia Woolever and Deborah Bruce, Westminster John Knox Press.
A Field Guide to U.S. Congregations: Who's Going Where and Why. 2002. Cynthia Woolever and Deborah Bruce, Westminster John Knox Press.
Beyond the Ordinary: 10 Strengths of U.S. Congregations. 2004. Cynthia Woolever and Deborah Bruce, Westminster John Knox Press.
Places of Promise: Finding Strength in Your Congregation's Location. 2008. Cynthia Woolever and Deborah Bruce, Westminster John Knox Press.
Leadership That Fits Your Church: What Kind of Pastor for What Kind of Congregation. 2012. Cynthia Woolever and Deborah Bruce, Westminster John Knox Press.