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Questions for Enhancing Congregational Vitality – Vital Signs December

Here is a collection of questions that may help a person or group assess their values, interests, priorities so that they may discern direction and make informed and grounded decisions. These may be used for annual or periodic evaluations or reviews of progress and goals by Sessions, Leadership Teams, and other leaders. These can be especially useful as a year or season closes and a new one begins. Invited participants may contribute something of what is going on in their lives and personal experiences in response to questions. Choose a set or use it as a template to compose your own questions that will bring to focus your community’s issues and concerns.

Riverside Presbytery’s Coordinator for Vital Congregations is available to guide a conversation (via Zoom) amongst elders, leaders, and/or church members.

Contact Rob Stewart, vci@riversidepresbytery.com

  1. Questions for Congregations and their Leaders Seeking Awareness
    1. During this particular (exciting, difficult, confusing) time, what are the things that look healthy? What do you value and appreciate?
    2. What new routines and rituals are emerging?
    3. What are our current challenges?
    4. What is blocking our progress?
    5. What is draining our energy?
    6. What needs to be set aside for a while?
    7. Where are we sensing passion, energy, enthusiasm, commitment?
  1. Discerning Life Together (VCI Presbytery Resource, adapted)
    1. What parts of our history, ministry, and life together are you most thankful for?
    2. What are the most significant parts of our story?
    3. How has this community of faith lived a vital life together?
    4. How have we shared God’s love and been about the work of God’s Kin-dom?
    5. What parts of our story are difficult to acknowledge?
    6. How have we fallen short of the glory of God in our life together?
    7. What things do we need to confess what we’ve done or left undone to bring about reconciliation and peace?
    8. From all the truth of our story, where do you believe God is calling us to courageously follow in faith? What priorities do we want to continue? What will our legacy be?
    9. What are your hopes and prayers to God for the next chapter of your faith community’s story?
  1. Questions for Leaders Discussing their Church’s Mission (VCI Pastors Workbook)
    1. What do people in the community say about this church? For what is it known?
    2. What would you say about the vitality of this church’s life together and its faithfulness to Christ? Where is your emphasis now?
    3. What work needs to be done?
    4. Are any activities “stale?” Are there things that ought to change?
    5. What are your fears, frustrations, and sorrows?
    6. Where is the Spirit leading this church?
    7. What is the “new thing” that God is doing in your church?
    8. What is your hope for this church?
    9. What will it take to get there? What partners can help you get there?
  1. Questions for a Congregation Celebrating God’s Blessings
    1. Where have you seen the Spirit at work in the life of this church?
    2. How has your church joined Christ in going out and meeting the needs of others?
    3. In what NEW ways has this church dreamed? Responded? Acted? Sacrificed? Changed?
    4. Where has there been conflict or hurt? What are the struggles?
    5. Name a time when this church experienced the wonder of God?
    6. How has this church been transformed by serving God and neighbors?
    7. Where do you imagine the Spirit is leading this congregation?
    8. What is a “next step?”
    9. What are your prayers for this church?
  1. Questions for Leaders
    1. What should we start doing?
    2. What should we keep doing?
    3. What should we stop doing?

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