Funded PhD scholar looking into children’s biblical reception and what it tells us about the state of religion. Currently focussing on Godly Play in the broad context of Christian children’s work using archives, real reader methods, discourse analysis and a splash of stylistics.

Also currently joint general editor of trackchanges and co-ordinator for the Sacred Texts and Child Readers research project.



MRes in 2018 – 19 in Interdisciplinary Biblical Studies at the University of Sheffield.

BA just before. I was a mature student, or so they say.

Back in the day, ‘A’ Levels, TEFL certificate, Protestant Theology in Montpellier.


“Daughters of a Lesser God? Abraham’s Women in Jerome Berryman’s Complete Guide to Godly Play”  27/02/2020  http://ow.ly/UFb950yOc4T

“Berryman’s Abraham: Friend of God and Spiritual Scientist?” 30/01/2020 http://ow.ly/V7Fd50yOc7l

“‘So Abraham Took Hagar’: A Children’s Retelling of Abraham” Sheffield Gender History Journal, Summer 2017. https://sheffieldgenderhistory.hcommons.org/?p=51

“Family Values? A Narratological Investigation of Sunday school and Ideology. The Abraham Cycle in Godly Play: A Case Study” Poster presentation with Jo Henderson-Merrygold at the Church of England Faith in Research Conference, Birmingham, 2018.

“Images of Entitlement: Faith formation’s Less-Than-Immaculate Conception of Consent” Poster presentation at the Shiloh conference, University of Sheffield, 2018.

“Dead Men Walking: Lepers, Zombies, and other Revenants in the Biblical Imagination” at the Gothic Bible conference, University of Sheffield, 2017

“Taystee is the New Ruth” at the Orange is the New Bible conference, University of Sheffield, 2016. Available here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c_lbuqnDbAU


Co-ordinator for Sacred Texts and Child Readersmulti-author blog here

Joint general editor for trackchanges faculty of Arts and Humanities, University of Sheffield

Upcoming Talks and Conferences

I was speaking at the SocRel response day in Nottingham on March 20th, and at the Religion and Victorian popular fiction and culture day in Sheffield on May 9th. Both are cancelled, alas.

Hopefully still speaking at ‘In the Crosshairs: Biblical Violence in Focus’ in London on May 14th, although we may have to settle for publication instead.


Member of the Children’s History Society, The Oral History Society, and the Victorian Literature Society.

Cath Kennedy

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