Partner Countries

·         Austria: The lutheran and reformed protestants are a minority less than 5 %. Because of the diaspora situation the confirmation groups can be small with just three or rather large with 50 confirmands. Special education for the confirmation workers is offered by the EJÖ and by KOKU.The first study brought more thoughtfulness to confirmation work. For the first time one diocese plans a new job position for a pastor explicit for CW.

·         Denmark: In Denmark, the Centre for Theology and Theological education Loegumkloster is the partner of the research project. On an academic basis, the Centre offers continuing education in the fields of general theology, practical theology and theological education for pastors and other employees within the Danish National Church, including teaching subjects from the social sciences, philosophy, and the arts which may assist the church in fulfilling its role within contemporary society.

·         Finland: In Finland 84 per cent of the population belong to the Evangelical Lutheran Church. Nearly 90% (88% in 2006) of those 15 year old attend confirmation training. The Finnish part of the confirmation study is handled by the Church Research Institute. The purpose of the Church Research Institute is to carry out and coordinate research on religious life, church matters and various trends in contemporary society. It provides research-based information for Church decision-making and the development of Church activities.

·         Germany (EKD): In Germany there are 23 independent regional churches in the EKD. 22 of them took part in the first study. The Comenius Institute is the central Church-related institution for education and research in the field of religious pedagogy. The publication of the first study (“Konfirmandenarbeit in Deutschland”, 2009) was combined with a series of presentations in most regional churches. In addition, there were three central conferences (Berlin, Kassel, Loccum). Following these conferences, a book for practitioners was published providing guidelines and ideas for improving confirmation work (“Konfirmandenarbeit gestalten”, 2010). In some regional churches the results of the study were discussed in the synods which led to adaptations of their frameworks for confirmation work. More information www.konfirmandenarbeit.eu

·         Germany (EmK): The United Methodist Church (Evangelisch-methodistische Kirche) in Germany is part of the research project and surveyed about 1.100 youths in all their parishes where they have one or more confirmation groups. Reutlingen School of Theology (Theologische Hochschule Reutlingen) and the Commissioner for Confirmation Work of the Central Conference of the United Methodist Church in Germany are responsible for the realisation of the study. There will be a monograph on the results of the United Methodist Church in Germany in 2016. More information: www.ku-studie.de and www.emk-ku.de.

·         Hungary: The Youth Office of the General Synod of the Reformed Church in Hungary is the partner of the research project in cooperation with the Gáspár Károli Reformed University. The Youth Office, according to the guidance of the Mission Committee of the Synod of the Reformed Church in Hungary, coordinates and represents our church’s youth work. The Reformed Church is the second largest denomination (21%) in Hungary, at the latest census 1,620,000 people claimed to be reformed by religion. The age of confirmation is at 13/14 and 10.000-11.000 youth attending confirmation every year. 

·         Norway: In Norway, the study involves about 60 parishes covering all 11 dioceses in the Lutheran Church of Norway (Den norske kirke). The research project is a joint effort by IKO - Church Educational Centre (Kirkelig pedagogisk senter), the central institution for education and research in the field of Christian pedagogy, KIFO - Centre for Church Research (Stiftelsen Kirkeforskning), a foundation for religion and church-related empirical research and KUN - Northern Norway Training Centre For Practical Theology (Kirkelig utdanningssenter i nord). Several papers and presentations from the confirmation study have been hold in Norway and abroad. Further work with the data from the participating Nordic countries has resulted in a book edited by Bernd Krupka & Ingrid Reite: Mellom pietisme og pluralitet. Konfirmasjonsarbeid i fire nordiske land. (Between pietism and plurality: Confirmation work in four Nordic countries, Oslo: Iko-forlaget 2010: Prismet bok). 

·         Poland: The Evangelical-Lutheran Church (Augsburg Confession) is a minority church in Poland (75 000 members, which is 0,2 % of the total population). In some of its congregations confirmation takes place only once in few years with a small group of 2-3 confirmands. Other congregations have about 20-30 confirmands every year. The research project will address to all confirmands in Poland (altogether about 600 per year). The Christian-theological academy is an ecumenical highschool (accredited by the state) for students studying protestant, orthodox or old-catholic theology at the theological faculty. There is also a pedagogical faculty for professional training concerning school teaching, further education and social work. There is no special research institution for the confirmation study, but research is supported by both, the academy and the Lutheran church.

·         Sweden: The Swedish study was handled by the Service Research Center - CTF at Karlstad University in cooperation with the Church of Sweden Research Department. 70 per cent of the Swedish population belong to the Church of Sweden and almost all confirmation work is administered by this church. Thereby data was collected from 50 units within the Church of Sweden: 35 parishes and 15 residential study and youth centres which organise 3-4 week long summer confirmation camps. Results from the Swedish study are published in the main project report Confirmation work in Europe and also in Krupka, Bernd & Ingrid Reite (2010) Mellom pietisme og pluralitet. Konfirmasjonsarbeid i fire nordiske land. (Between pietism and plurality: Confirmation work in four Nordic countries) Oslo: Iko-forlaget.

·         Switzerland: In Switzerland approximately one third of the population belong to the protestant (reformed) church. Confirmation time takes place at young people’s age of 15/16, because the confirmation year is in most of the cantonal churches connected to the final year at school. In the research project of 2007/08 only parishes of the Canton Zurich took part but the results attracted lively interest also in other cantonal churches of Switzerland. As the situation of confirmation work in the 24 reformed cantonal churches is rather different and practically no empirical data is available, a research team of the Faculty of Theology of the University of Zurich is now planning a comparative study which includes nearly all of the 22’000 girls and boys who will be confirmed in 2013. This study will be part of the planned international study but will describe common and different aspects of confirmation work in the several churches of Switzerland with regard to regional, cultural and confessional differences.