Grant Gives Four Parishes Three-year Growth Training

04.09.21 | Homepage | by Kimberly Durnan

    Four diocesan churches are the recipient of a national grant giving them three years of professional coaching to create a healthier congregation, strengthen leadership and grow the church.

    Annunciation in Lewisville, St. Nicholas in Flower Mound, St. Paul’s in Prosper and St. David of Wales in Denton are considered transitional size churches that have strong potential to reach the next level of program-size congregation. A team from Jasper Executive Coaching and Consulting, and Leighton Ford Ministries will provide a guided transforming church process to bring these churches to the next level. The consultants are paid by an ecumenical national endowment grant and by a $500 annual stipend from each church.

    The programming includes a leadership cohort for clergy, lay leader retreats and congregational focus groups, debriefings and surveys. The consultants use information from a national database of church health that contains more than 11 million records to provide insight into best practices, said Mike Marino, founder of Jasper Executive Coaching and Consulting.

    At the end of the three-year coaching period, success will be determined by a survey inquiring how the organization improved, the effectiveness of leadership, and other metrics illustrating the health of each congregation.

    "I’m thrilled for these parishes, which I’ve dubbed the 'Northwestern Quartet.' All of them are in high-growth areas, have tested and dynamic clergy leaders, and are critical to the Diocese of Dallas’ long-term growth, said the Very Rev. Canon Rob Price. "I’m particularly excited about the training that the leadership teams will receive, which will bear enormous fruit for the Kingdom over the long-term. Additionally, the grant that is resourcing this process is a huge boon to the Diocese as a whole, since doing this ourselves would require a significant commitment of funds that we can now leave in the hands of the other parishes to do their own ministry. Catherine Thompson, Tom Smith, Paul Nesta, and Mark Wright begin this work with my deepest benediction, and I hope that other parishes will see the good things that Jesus is doing through this process and will explore beginning their own in the seasons ahead."

    The consultants will hold a workshop for any parish in the diocese interested in pursuing such programming for their parish. The Transforming Church Initiative Workshop is scheduled from 9 a.m. to Noon., May 8, at St. Paul’s at 420 South Coit Road, in Prosper. Click here for an event flyer.