Most people tend to think of our organization as one that provides interim pastor ministries to churches who find themselves without a senior pastor. That’s a large part of what we do, but another big part of our organization is conducting ministry assessments.
Undergoing a ministry assessment can provide your church with valuable insight into the life of your church, and it also gives members of your congregation an opportunity to be heard. If you’re a leader in a church—either an elder or on church staff—you might be thinking, “Oh, I hear enough from the people in my church. I don’t need a ministry assessment to tell me what they feel or think about things.”
While it’s true that certain people in your church probably make their feelings known on a regular basis, their perspectives may not be representative of the experience of your congregation as a whole, which is why it’s important to occasionally undergo a church assessment.
Three Tiers of Ministry Assessments
At VitalChurch, we have three levels or “tiers” of church ministry assessments.
A Tier 1 assessment consists of an online survey of approximately 50 questions. Through the survey, your church will get a good understanding of the state of the church in general, and find out what’s working and what’s not. A Tier 1 assessment is not designed for churches going through a significant transition or crisis, but is more appropriate for those looking for a “check-up” and to check in with their congregation.
A Tier 2 ministry assessment is also conducted online, but includes added questions designed to evaluate specific ministries or areas of church life. Your church leadership will work with the diagnostic experts at VitalChurch to determine what questions should be included in your Tier 2 assessment.
A Tier 3 assessment is the most in-depth. It begins with an online survey, but is followed by an onsite visit from the VitalChuch ministry assessment team. They will meet with church leadership, staff, and key volunteers to gain additional insight into the life and ministry of the church.
All surveys we conduct are anonymous, providing a safe environment for people to express their true thoughts and perspectives.
What We Provide Churches with at the End of the Ministry Assessment
No matter which tier your church chooses, each assessment is followed by a written report that includes a “mirror” and a “map.” The assessment process pulls data from numerous sources, as well as what we discern from God, and reflects that back to a church like a mirror.
The mirror provides relevant data from the congregation that will help support the leadership team as they proactively move forward. It provides a framework by which leadership can make better-informed decisions, help ongoing organizational learning, and help address revealed blind spots. It is also designed to encourage prayer and to enhance strategic thinking and dialogue about vision, values, and core ministries.
A Tier 3 assessment includes an oral presentation to the church body. They will hear from an outside perspective what issues are facing their church and the recommendations for addressing them. This helps your church body engage the in the process, and it is a key step in the healing process for many churches.
In addition to providing churches with a mirror, we provide a map to follow that will help your church return to vitality and health through specific recommendations. We come alongside churches and walk with them through their season of transition. We are pastors—not consultants—who have been called to the mission of leading churches and seeing them reconciled and restored to unity, with gifted leadership in place, gospel values embedded, effective governance, an exciting mission agreed upon, and discipleship pathways engaged.
We’ve seen churches in all states of transition and crisis be revitalized and healed. But the process starts with an understanding of what your church’s true issues are. A ministry assessment is a great first step toward greater church unity, effectiveness, and lasting change.
Contact us today to learn more about our church assessments or to get started.