We are proud to announce that FaithX and Datastory were recently chosen as primary contractors for the Episcopal Church’s new missio:Engage! Initiative. Which means that Strategic Missional Consulting by FaithX and MapDash for Faith Communities by Datastory are now recommended resources for those joining the new missio:Engage! Community of Practice. Our work has has already begun on a missio:Engage! pilot project with the combined dioceses of New York and Central New York.
FaithX consultants worked with diocesan designees to collect key parochial report data, to be analysed for indicators of individual congregation vitality and sustainability, as well as for diocese-level indicators of missional opportunity. And Datastory is now in the process of analyzing this data and provisioning a diocese-specific missio map dashboard for each diocese.
Future steps will include:
- Assisting the diocesan bishops in selection of their missio planning teams.
- A first joint missio team retreat at which the teams will receive orientation and training in the use of MapDash for diocesan-level missional planning.
- A second joint missio team retreat at which mission teams will utilize MapDash to begin a diocesan missional opportunity assessment.
- A third and final retreat at which missio teams will develop strategies and plans for ministry development and redevelopment based on the results of their missional opportunity assessment, including designing a pilot test of their chosen strategies.
- Coaching and mini-consults with bishops and missio teams as they implement pilot-tested ministry development and redevelopment strategies.
Missio:Engage is the outgrowth of resolutions at the 2018 Episcopal General Convention that called for the creation of a church-wide “Community of Practice” to help congregations and their bishops better engage the cultural realities of their communities for the sake of launching new ministries and multi-cultural missional initiatives. This church-wide Community of Practice will seek to embody the Way of Love for local faith communities and their dioceses, focusing on redeveloping ministries for the sake of launching new ministries that make our best gifts accessible to the New Americans growing up around us.
The missio:Engage! Initiative will offer engagement this new missional community of practice to the dioceses and congregations in the church-at-large in three contexts:
- Dioceses where intentional redevelopment is already a strategic priority.
- Dioceses where this strategic priority is still under development.
- Clusters of redeveloping congregations in non-participating dioceses.
The initiative is supported by a broad network of wise leaders, including the Presiding Bishop’s staff for Evangelism, Reconciliation, Creation Care and Ethnic Ministries.
Watch this space for more information on the progress of our work in support of this exciting church-wide initiative!