Engaging with New Religious Movements


INFORM Autumn Seminar: Minority Religions and Extremism in Schools and on Campus

New Religious Radicalisms

Date - Saturday, 5th November 2016; 9.30am - 4.30pm

Location - New Academic Building, London School of Economics


Most people know something about religions such as Christianity, Judaism, Buddhism, Hinduism or Islam, but there are thousands more religious groups, movements and gatherings around. Many academics call such groups New Religious Movements (NRMs) although you also find some people calling them 'cults' or 'sects'.

In addition, there are many other less structured beliefs and practices around, including what might be called 'DIY' spiritualities. Yet other people hold humanist or atheist viewpoints.

The Church of England has a National Adviser on NRMs and a network of diocesan advisers. We also have a partnership with INFORM at the London School of Economics which provides information about New Religious Movements.

Resources available on the right-hand side include:

  • For families and friends of people in NRMs
  • Guidance on lending or hiring a church or church hall to an unknown group
  • Advice about NRM-related advertising in church newsletters and magazines

For questions about any NRM-related matters, contact:

Dr Anne Richards, Mission and Public Affairs, Archbishops Council, Church House, Great Smith Street, London. SW1P 3NZ


0207 898 1444

Other places to go:

To get information

The Church of England has a partnership with INFORM at the London School of Economics. INFORM staff can give information on a wide variety of groups and movements and can put enquirers in contact with parents' networks, counsellors or other sources of specialist advice.


London School of Economics
Houghton Street
Tel: 0207 955 7654
Email: inform@lse.ac.uk
Web: www.inform.ac

Another useful website for information is the Centre for the Study of New Religions at www.cesnur.org

To get local pastoral care and advice

Each Church of England diocese should have an appointed adviser on New Religious Movements. Send an email to anne.richards@churchofengland.org if you want to get in touch with your local adviser.

Deliervance Minstry: The Church of England has guidelines about deliverance ministry which can be found here:  https://www.churchofengland.org/media/1734117/guidelines on deliverance ministry.pdf

Engaging with people from new religions and alternative spiritualities

Anne Richards, Sense Making Faith, CTBI 2007

Reading for people studying NRMs

Amanda van Eck Duymaer van Twist: 'What can we learn about radicalisation from the life histories of cult members?' Online at: http://www.radicalisationresearch.org/debate/van-eck-cult-members/

The Public Face of African New Religious Movements in Diaspora

Afe Adogame, University of Edinburgh, UK;  Published October 2014; Hardback; ISBN 978-1-4724-2010-7

Legal Cases, New Religious Movements, and Minority Faiths

James T. Richardson, University of Nevada, Reno, USA and François Bellanger, University of Geneva, Switzerland; Published October 2014; Hardback; ISBN 978-1-4724-2874-5

Minority Religions and Fraud

Amanda van Eck Duymaer van Twist, Inform, UK; Published September 2014; Hardback; ISBN 978-1-4724-0911-9

Global Religious Movements Across Borders

Stephen M. Cherry, University of Houston-Clear Lake, USA and Helen Rose Ebaugh, University of Houston, USA; Published February 2014; Paperback; Also available in Hardback ; ISBN 978-1-4094-5688-9

Revisionism and Diversification in New Religious Movements

Eileen Barker, London School of Economics and Inform, UK;  Published December 2013; Paperback; Also available in Hardback ; ISBN 978-1-4094-6230-9

State Responses to Minority Religions

David M. Kirkham, Brigham Young University, USA;Published December 2013; Paperback; Also available in Hardback ; ISBN 978-1-4094-6579-9

Prophecy in the New Millennium

Sarah Harvey and Suzanne Newcombe, Inform, UK; Published April 2013; Paperback; Also available in Hardback ; ISBN 978-1-4094-4996-6

Spiritual and Visionary Communities

Timothy Miller, University of Kansas, USA; Published February 2013; Paperback; Also available in Hardback ; ISBN 978-1-4094-3903-5



To find out about the Church of England's ecumenical and inter-religious relationships see below:

Relationships with other Christians

The Council for Christian Unity on this website has a number of resources on the Church of England's relationships with other churches, including:


Relationships with major faith traditions

Presence and Engagement is the Church of England's national programme equipping Christians for mission and ministry in the wonderful diversity of our multi faith society. Find out about about what's happening at www.presenceandengagement.org.uk