See photo credits bottom of page
Shaping the Parish™ is a new program to develop and nurture healthier parishes.
We are offering two interdependent elements:
- A support system for your parish as it seeks increased health
- The development of people in the parish with increased skills and knowledge for shaping the parish
Shaping the Parish assumes that vibrant, faithful churches will flourish as parishes and their leaders improve their own:
- Spiritual practice
- Emotional and social intelligence
- Change theory and methods
Shaping the Parish is attempting to create a support and learning process that:
1) Has short term beneficial results for the parish while also
2) beginning the parish on a long-term pathway for transformation: a more vibrant parish, more deeply grounded in spiritual life that supports the primary task of a parish; and that
3) along the way increases the competency of parish leaders for emotional and spiritual life and in change theory and methods.
We focus on immediate, tangible improvements while building long-term health.
Shaping the Parish is about the renewal of your parish. You are giving these 16 months to its revitalization. The program is a resource in helping a healthy and stable parish continue to develop. It’s also a resource for parishes that are struggling and seeking new life.
You are deciding to invest your time and energy in the shaping of your parish. We are there to help you do that. We are here to assist leaders and parish communities take responsibility for their ongoing health and formation.
The stance needed is “This is what I’m doing for the next 16 months.” The program is based on full participation in every session. It also assumes reading in the field and the designing and completion of six developmental projects in your parish.
No new partcipants are being admitted. More on the national program
We will not be beginning any new diocesan programs before the fall of 2013. We are taking time to:
1) Digest what we have learned
2) Do some writing for a couple of professional journals in the field of Organization Development
3) Complete a two volume work on parish interventions.
We currently offer a diocese-based program in Washington, D.C. Please click here to learn more about bringing Shaping the Parish™ to your diocese.
Diocesan programs include six weekends, over about 16 months. Participants complete readings and six projects between weekends. More on the diocesan program
Both programs are essentially the same. The National Program will provide more attention to the issues of emotional and social intelligence during the workshops and more support for projects between summers. The Diocesan Programs will provide more structured support because of the frequency of workshop gatherings.
Photo credits for top of page Sacred place, Collection: Flickr; Photographer: Zoran Strajin; Chapel with Font, Collection: Flickr; Photographer: Peter de Rooij; France, Provence, Sainte-Baume Mountain, woman burning candle at Troglodyte Sainte-Marie Madeleine Holy Cave, Collection: Photographer’s Choice RF; Photographer: Sami Sarkis All Getty Images