Congregational Vitality Assessment Tool
The Congregational Vitality Assessment (CVA, currently version 2.0) is a ground-breaking, research-based online diagnostic tool designed to provide a congregation with an assessment of its Vitality (how healthy it is) and its Sustainability (whether it has the people, financial and contextual resources necessary to survive). The vitality section carries the bulk of the assessment, measuring ten areas of congregational functioning, such as Vision and Mission, Leadership, Lay Empowerment, Worship, Formation, Stewardship and more.
The CVA is available in two versions:
1. CVA Single Congregation Version (free), which can be completed by a single congregational leader or a selected congregational leadership group. The CVA Single Congregation Version is made available free of charge to congregations of all denominations and religions by a partnership between The FaithX Project and the Episcopal Church Foundation.
2. CVA Judicatory Platform (subscription), a customized dashboard through which a judicatory can directly administer the CVA to each of its congregations, receive anonymized results (including supplemental, non-scored questions), and monitor their results over time. Available by subscription for $2,495/year (covers all updates and upgrades), with a first year setup fee of $2,500 (covers customization and training costs). For more information email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The subscription-based Judicatory Version was created in response to requests and design input from several judicatories (dioceses, synods, districts) across the U.S. that wanted to incorporate into the systemwide congregational development processes. It provides them with a judicatory-specific dashboard that will allow them to:
- Directly coordinate the administration of the CVA to their congregations.
- Receive anonymized diagnostic summary assessments of their congregations’ vitality and sustainability.
- Monitor congregational vitality and sustainability on a year-to-year basis.
- Add locally-relevant questions about congregations’ ministries, programs, and other important information.
- Supplement the backward-looking parochial reporting data with real-time, forward-looking diagnostic data and recommendations that their congregations can use to improve their own vitality and sustainability.
Since the Congregational Vitality Assessment is based on self-reporting, its diagnosis will only be as accurate as the answers you provide, so you can help your congregation get the most helpful results by answering as honestly and objectively as possible.
Since its digital launch, more than 200 congregations from a multitude of denominations have used the CVA to assess their vitality and sustainability. Version 2.0 is the same data-grounded tool, but with a completely redesigned user interface making it more approachable and easier to use by congregational leadership, and upcoming versions will bring us a fully translated Spanish Evaluación de la Vitalidad Congregacional.
Want to sample the CVA?
Click this link to see what your survey-takers will experience when you initialize and send the survey link to them. If you answer each question and click through each section, you will see all of the survey questions. At the end, you will see a sample of the scoring and recommendations for each section.
To launch a survey for your congregation, fill out this form. You will be sent an email message with a link to launch your congregation's survey, along with a password you will need to enter in order to initialize your survey.
Curious to learn how another congregation used the CVA? Click here.
Have other questions before you begin to explore the tool? Check out the list of FAQs here.
- Data-Grounded Discernment for Leadership Transition Planning by Ken Howard, an ECF Vital Practices blog, August 24, 2021
- Congregational Vitality Assessment: How To Use This Powerful (Free) New Tool, an ECF Vital Practices webinar presented by Ken Howard and Haley Bankey, January 27, 2021
- Strategies and Tools for COVID-Related Outreach by Ken Howard, an ECF Vital Practices blog, March 21, 2020