The Rev. Jay Lawlor reflects on his Congregational Vitality project

The Rev. Jay Lawlor: Congregational Vitality Project

The Rev. Jay Lawlor is reflecting on his own experience as an Episcopal priest and congregational development research on measuring vitality in congregations.

The Congregational Vitality Project is an effort to more deeply understand what makes for vital congregations, how to measure vitality, and ways in which we cultivate vitality in congregations.”

— The Rev. Jay Lawlor

INDIANAPOLIS, IN, US, March 7, 2018 /EINPresswire.com/ — The Rev. Jay Lawlor has been a member of the Episcopal Church for over twenty years, more than fifteen of those as an ordained leader. He has served in congregations of nearly every size in different regions of the country. As part of his Church Mission Projects, the Rev. Lawlor has been examining how we can better understand and cultivate vital congregations. He draws on his own experience as an Episcopal priest and that of congregational development research.

"The Congregational Vitality Project is an effort to more deeply understand what makes for vital congregations, how to measure vitality of congregations, and ways in which we cultivate vitality in congregations," said the Rev. Jay Lawlor in a statement on his website. He continued explaining that "An important aspect of this project is promoting and measuring missional activity to move beyond “maintenance” or even sustainability. Common tools can assist congregations, dioceses, and denominations (even non-denominational or non-affiliated churches) to better understand congregational vitality and measure effectiveness/outcomes of vitality efforts to continuously improve training and outcomes in congregations of all sizes."

The Rev. Lawlor's Congegational Vitality page further states: Congregational Vitality measures a congregation’s effectiveness in living into God’s mission of reconciliation. In the Catechism (Outline of the Faith) in the Episcopal Church’s Book of Common Prayer (BCP) this is defined as restoring all people to unity with God in Christ as it worships and prays, proclaims the Gospel, and promotes justice, peace, and love. Two key components of living as vital missional congregations are mission and viability.

The Rev. Lawlor looks at twelve key areas of vitality identified as the “12 Marks of Healthy Church Behavior” by Mary MacGregor and Reb Scarborough (Congregational Vitality Development Basics 101, Episcopal Diocese of Texas), 2004, edited 2011 — with references to Peter Steinke; The Evangelism, Church Growth, Worship and Mission Agency of the Presbyterian Church of Canada.

The twelve areas of vitality are addressed in eight major areas of congregational development:
1. Church Size Theory
2. Considerations for Change
3. Values, Purpose, and Vision
4. Evangelism
5. Stewardship
6. Leadership Development
7. Conflict Management
8. Church Governance

Future releases will focus on each of the eight areas of congregational development. Readers can learn more about the Congregational Vitality Project at https://www.therevjaylawlor.com/missionprojects/congregationalvitality/

The Rev. Jay Lawlor
The Rev. Jay Lawlor
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Source: EIN Presswire