Is your vision of who you are the same vision your friends have of you?
Are you as happy as you can be?
What kind of cabbage are you most like?
So, I fall for those tests that used to be in magazines that are now mostly on-line in which you answer a few questions and they tell you what character you are most like from the movie “Princess Bride” or what career choice would be best for you.
I fell into taking one from the National Leadership Roundtable on Church Management which is a tool to help determine how healthy your parish is. The answers were not quick and easy however and I think this may be a project I give to Parish Pastoral Council to tackle.
There was a presentation by the service director of the Roundtable, Mr. Jim Lundholm-Eades at the last First Friday Club of Akron. They have past talks on line on their website HERE and this is one I would recommend though I don't think it has made it to the site yet. Part of the talk was discerning how healthy a parish is. A healthy parish is like a healthy marriage; when the couple’s relationship is healthy, their love then spills out to others. When a parish is healthy, instead of being insular its ministry begins to spill out to the community. It is like the love of God. One of the explanations of creation is that it is an overflow of the love within the Trinity.
There are smart parishes. These parishes have a vision and a plan for the future. They understand that they can no longer just simply open their doors and people will walk in. There must be a presence in the community (which in business they call marketing.) They are financially solvent and/or have a realistic plan to sustain themselves. And they are technologically savvy.
There are healthy parishes. In a healthy parish there are minimal politics (there are always politics, it is a matter of degree), minimum confusion, high moral, high productivity, and low turnover.
How out going, how smart, and how healthy is your parish? If you are in the mood, maybe take a look at the questionnaires that the Roundtable provides that begins the conversation HERE.