Our Parish Engagement and Stewardship Program will assist the parish with two goals:
1. Increase parishioner engagement: Mass attendance, ministry involvement, financial support
2. Improve stewardship of the parish’s resources: time, talent, and treasure
The program is customized for each parish, but generally includes:
- A study to assess parish needs
- Assistance with fundraising to defray parish cost
- Parishioner outreach
- Improving church community\culture
- Training for staff and volunteers
- Creating or improving administrative processes.
- Implement lasting changes which the parish can sustain without external support.
The parish can use a combination of means to cover program costs. The program includes support to help the parish generate these funds.
- The parish can pay for the cost directly.
- It can solicit support from donors or grants to cover the cost of individual projects
- We work with local and national Catholic companies to place advertisements in communication material for parishioners.
- Parishioners can take advantage of our Rome Pilgrimage. For each pilgrim, CSS can apply $100 to program costs.
The program consists of two phases. The first phase is 3 months, which includes the core projects: study & report, fundraising support, basic parish outreach. The report will contain the results of the study along with the proposed elective projects for the second phase.
The timeline of the second phase depends on the number and depth of the projects selected by the parish. In most cases we propose a two year program, where the first year will be more intensive and and the second year will have quarterly support.
The cost of the second phase will be determined by the elective projects chosen by the parish. Although the program includes means to help the parish defray costs, the parish must be able to financially cover at least half of the first phase.
These three projects are always a part of each parish’s program.
Parish Needs Study – Conduct a parish wide study to assess current strengths, areas of improvement, opportunities, and needs. The study will include personal interviews with all stake-holders and a wide demographic range. Besides gathering data, the study itself will serve to connect with key parish leaders and build momentum for the parish outreach.
Fundraising Support – We will assist the parish in raising funds to defray program costs.
Parishioner Outreach – Educate parishioners about their call and mission as a Catholic and invite them to a greater degree of involvement with their time, talent, and treasure.
Depending on parish needs, some of the following programs may be implemented.
Projects that focus on spiritual & community development:
- Retreats/Parish Mission – A life impacting experience for staff, volunteers, or the whole parish.
- Welcome Program – Create a process to engage visitors and help new parishioners become active in the parish. Training for greeters that provides a genuine experience of welcoming.
- Ongoing Engagement Program – Develop an ongoing program so the parish will be able to continue to improve parish engagement.
- Community Building – Help the community connect with each other and build a culture where the love of Christ can be felt.
- Dynamic Catholic Book Program – Help parishioners develop a deeper understanding of their calling as Catholics. Most parishes experience a 9.1% increase in attendance and a 10.4% increase in collections on average.
Projects that focus on parish back office needs:
- Website Development – Create or improve a website. Reduce cost for website hosting. Get website usage data to make better decisions. Get staff training for website maintenance..
- Process Restructuring – Develop new processes or improve existing ones to increase administrative efficiency and productivity.
- Cost Reduction – Using our network of vendors we can help parishes and schools save money on products and services they already purchase.
- Capital Campaign – We can guide or lead a capital campaign or improve current fundraising programs.
Projects that focus on training or skill development:
- Parishioner Stewardship – Help each member of the church community understand their obligation to be good stewards of the gifts entrusted to them by God.
- Public Speaking/Communication Training – Help priests, deacons, and lay ministers effectively communicate the Gospel, with an advanced, proven program used with seminarians in Rome. Provide staff and volunteers with tools to enable better communication.
- Parish Engagement Training – Training for staff and volunteers on best practices to reach different demographics: youth, couples, young adults.
- Leadership Development – Training in leadership skills for parish staff and volunteers.
- Money Management Classes – Increase giving by helping parishioners get out of debt and become more responsible with their material goods.
- Digital Evangelization Training – Train how digital communication & social media should (and should not) be used within a parish.