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History of Congregational Development in the Episcopal Church


Spiritual Maps

Spiritual Practice Map from In Your Holy Spirit Books - Michelle Heyne and Robert Gallagher

The Benedictine Promise and the Dynamics of the Spiritual Life - Each element of the Promise is rooted in recollection and has certain internal dynamics. In stability, obedience and conversion of life there comes an awareness of God’s presence.

 

Pastoral Theology Sermons

Power from the center pervades the whole - August 21, 2011   And an insert in the bulletin

Hospitality sermon -"goin home" August 14, 2011  And an insert in the bulletin

Salt & Light 5 Epiphany sermon - Connects some of the themes in the In Your Holy Spirit books to the gospel reading of the day.


Spiritual Practices 

Preparation for the Sacrament of Reconciliation - An 8 page booklet

 

Episcopal Ethos - Spirituality

Episcopal Spirituality - In a booklet form, the elements of an Episcopal Spirituality. The Episcopal Church has developed a particular form of Christian spirituality that has emerged from its roots in Anglicanism and in the American experience. That spirit can be found in most parishes and dioceses of the church

Episcopal Spirituality Assessment - For use in parish programs. Use with Episcopal Spirituality (above).

Episcopal Ethos - comprehensiveness, personal holiness, and worldly holiness.

Shape of the Parish Model   A two page summary of the model offered in Fill All Things: The Spiritual Dynamics of the Parish Church, Robert Gallagher


Organization Development 

Definitions of Parish Development and Organization Development

 Survey-Feedback is an OD method for collecting and analyzing information about an organization making use of a survey or questionnaire. The method has two primary objectives: 1). A tool in the improvement of the parish and 2). A tool that helps the working relationship between parish leaders and members. It is one among several methods used by OD practitioners along with interviews, observation, and group exploration & discovery processes.

Shared Leadership On maintaining the group’s task and relationship functions

A “testing” process - helps a community cope with situations in which a few persistent voices press a concern or idea that would have an effect on the community’s life. What they are saying may represent a widely shared view or it may simply be their view. Those expressing the issue may not really know how many they represent. … The use of a “testing process” requires leaders to use sound judgment in deciding when the process is likely to produce valid and useful information as well as help the community manage its anxiety. 

Intervention Theory - The theory assumes that in gaining internal commitment from people one element builds on the other.  The more the information is valid and useful, the more likely the free choice, the more there is truly free choice, the more likely there will be internal commitment.

Taking the "al" Out of OD - By W. Warner Burke. Change a few words and you see the case for us calling the field "parish development" rather than "congregational development." Or from Burke's case you might just go with "congregation development."

 

Parish Size and Growth Resources

In general our approach is to: 1) Take note of a decline in parish numbers. We do need to acknowledge what's true. 2) assume it is most likely the result of long-term behavior patterns, operating values and deep underlying assumptions (parish culture), and 3) focus energy on becoming a healthier parish. So, attend to prayer life and a spirituality of hospitality rather than recruiting new members. All of which is to suggest that resources other than those below might be more useful.

Six Strategies for Growth - Six ways in which parishes grow.

Three Growth Strategies  - There are three broad membership growth strategies we might tease out of current practice in the Episcopal Church: organic growth, change the church’s culture, appreciative marketing

Size Categories: Dynamics & Issues - As the parish grows there will be a tendency to increase coordination, routines and standard practices, formal communication and decision-making processes. That will impact the dynamics around: trust, communication, and leadership.

Congregational Options - One page with the standard options faced by parishes that have become static or are in decline

Other resources 

Use of Self as an Instrument of Change  - Presenters: Katherine M. Curran, Charles N. Seashore, Ph.D., Michael G. Welp,M.S. Presented at: The 1995 ODN National Conference, Nov. 17, 1995, Seattle

The Awareness/Behavior CycleNewt Fink & Cecil Benoit, 1975. Useful tool for understanding use of self dynamics

About T-groups - A description of the T-group method

Parish Web Sites - List of desirable characteristics 

Elements of a Diocesan Parish Development System - This will be revised and updated as part of the two volume Interventions: Methods and Processes for Building Healthier Parishes  The general elements hold true. This approach produced among the more fragile parishes, in one diocese, over a five-year period, an increased parish average pledge of 68% and attendance by 15%. In congregations with leaders participating in the training program (an early form of CDI), the figures were 80% average pledge increase and 24% in attendance. All parishes reported increased satisfaction with the central elements of parish life, e.g., worship, formation, service, evangelization, etc. We did this while also decreasing the percentage of the diocesan budget used for financial aid to those parishes. It was also a time when the state’s population was declining. Parishes with woman vicars participating in the CDI program did better than the others. What we have heard over the years is that dioceses doing a CDI along with the other elements noted in the document seem to get good results.


Type’s critics – considerations and responses by Roger Pearman, PTi Bulletin of Psychological Type | Vol. 33, No. 4 (2010)