We won't say it's a Christmas miracle – but it's certainly an unexpected
Christmas gift! The Vital Signs assessment portal was completed ahead of the projected January 1st date, and is open now for churches to input their information.
A resolution adopted at Annual Conference Session in June required churches to complete an assessment of their vitality, "no later than December 15, 2008 using the assessment tools provided in Vital Signs: A Pathway to Congregational Wholeness, by Dan R. Dick (Discipleship Resources, 2007)."
The online assessment was to be available October 1, but a serious accident involving a key player on the original survey development team delayed the launch. The General Board of Discipleship then assumed responsibility for the development project, and put together a team that worked full time to create the online survey and supporting resources for this Conference. The team had projected January 1, 2009 as the date the materials would be available—but finished ahead of schedule.
During the development process the Committee on Congregational Revitalization asked churches to complete an extremely brief online questionnaire that asked, among other things, whether the church could benefit from assistance. That questionnaire is still open for churches to use to register this need. It is not, however, a substitute for the Vital Signs assessment. Again, please access the Vital Signs assessment portal to fulfill your church's requirement.
Because churches were not able to gain access to these tools on time, they now will be allowed until March 1, 2009 to complete their work.
This assessment by churches is distinct from the Lewis Pastoral Leadership Inventory, which all clergy under appointment to a church in the California-Nevada Annual Conference were directed to take during October.
Clergy who have taken the LPLI still need to ensure that the Vital Signs assessment is done for their churches.