Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about the Congregational Vitality Assessment (CVA)
Q. What is the purpose of the Congregational Vitality Assessment (or CVA)?
A. The Congregational Vitality Assessment is designed to help a congregation diagnose its current condition in two areas: (1) Vitality (Is it thriving, surviving, or declining?) and (2) Sustainability (Does it has the people, financial, and contextual resources necessary to survive?).
Q. What elements of Vitality the CVA measure?
A. The CVA measures how effectively a congregation carrying out ten vital areas of congregational functioning: (1) Vision, Mission, & Discernment, (2) Lay Engagement & Empowerment, (3) Context Awareness & Inclusion, (4) Change Readiness, (5) Dealing with Differences/Conflict, (6) Spiritual Life & Worship, (7) Formation, Education, & Training, (8) Outreach, (9) Leadership & Organization, (10) Stewardship.
Q. How is the CVA administered?
A. Best results are obtained by administering the CVA to a representative subset of the congregations. However, key leaders may want to take the CVA first in order to be able to better explain to the representative group what the experience of taking it is like. We do not recommend administering the CVA to the entire congregation, as it skews the results.
Q. What makes the CVA unique?
A. Prescriptive professional analysis tools for congregational life have been around in many forms for a while, and offer congregations concrete ways to view their mission, ministry, and corporate life together. However, no other vitality assessment tool to date is as thoroughly grounded in research and data, and most come with high price tags that are cost prohibitive for many communities of faith to use.
Q. Why are FaithX and ECF making the CVA available free? Are there any strings attached?
A. FaithX and ECF view congregational vitality to be the paramount issue for faith communities today. Unfortunately, those congregations who need the most help addressing their vitality issues are the ones who can least afford it. Free access to the CVA is one way we are trying to address that need. There are no strings attached. Of course, since both FaithX and ECF offer consultative services, we hope you will keep us in mind if you them. Faithx will offer a 10% discount on services to any congregation that has taken the CVA.
Q. What kind of questions does the CVA ask?
A. The CVA asks the user to answer 5-10 question in each of 10 areas of Congregational life (example below or click on image for full question set).
Q. What do CVA results look like?
A. When the individual or team has completed the CVA, the answers are scored, and the individual or team leader then receives summary scores of each of the ten vitality areas and two sustainability areas, along with suggestions of ways to improve in each of the areas (example below or click on image for complete sample report).
Q. What are research sources on which the CVA is grounded?
A. Click here to review the research sources.
Q. How often is the CVA updated based on new research?
A. The CVA is updated at the end of any year in which vitality-related research is newly released (we invite our users to notify us of such research they might discover at firstname.lastname@example.org).
Q. What should our congregation do after taking the CVA?
A. There are several things a congregation can do after taking the CVA.
- Review CVA results and recommendations with congregational leadership and with the congregation.
- Find consensus around congregational vitality strength and weakness.
- Identify the areas of vitality weaknesses you most need to address and which strengths you can leverage to address them.
- Develop strategies to address identified areas of vitality.
- Determine which strategies you feel capable pursuing yourselves and which you might need help with.
- Peruse services, resources, and research available on our website.
- Contact us at email@example.com for a free 30-min discussion to weigh your alternatives.
For more information or to ask other questions not listed here on the FAQs page, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org