Congregational Resource Guide
Finding the right resources for your congregation
This seminary textbook on “practical theology” will help congregational leaders who want to understand and fix messes or understand and build-on successes. It will be helpful to clergy in a new call. It will be valuable to the committee charged with celebrating a congregation’s milestone anniversary and the taskforce requesting a member survey or engaging a church consultant. A focused and purposeful method is advanced, studying the congregation using one of four frames: (1) Ecological-the congregation in the community and world, (2) Culture-the congregation’s distinct identity, (3) Resources-the congregation’s potential for impact, and (4) Process-how things get done. The prompting question or issue determines the frame. For example, if members are unwilling to serve on church council, consider a study using the “process” frame. The writers and editors, all experts in the comprehensive study of congregations, are teachers and administrators from Protestant, Catholic, and Jewish universities. A sample Parish Profile Inventory and survey suggestions for ways to assess demographic and religious involvement are offered as appendices.