Vitality Improvement Program

Fact Sheet for Small Congregations

What is the Vitality Improvement Program (VIP)? The VIP project is a 3-year program focusing on increasing the vitality and sustainability of smaller congregations. VIP is funded by a grant from Trinity Wall Street, as well as contributions (financial and in-kind) from participating dioceses, churches, and FaithX scholarships and partner organizations.

Who should apply to the VIP? Congregations with an ASA of 30-70 are invited. Congregations should be relatively healthy, free of major conflicts, and have leaders and members who are willing and able to apply learnings for the benefit of the congregation and their neighbors.

What will the VIP do for my congregation? In the big picture, the VIP anticipated outcomes include increased vitality and sustainability as well as more effective stewardship practices and the capacity to engage adaptive leadership. In the smaller picture we hope to see more engagement with neighbors, an increased number of volunteers and those willing to serve in leadership roles, and clearer answers to the question “Why are we here and would anyone notice if we were gone?”

What does participation look like? Participation means the formation of a team to work with the diocesan VIP team and FaithX consultants as well as congregation members to facilitate the Congregational Vitality Assessment, demographic data, and neighborhood input to create and implement a strategic missional plan. Suggested time commitment: 1-2 meetings/month, 4-6 hours/week

What does the VIP cost? As noted above, the majority of the cost is underwritten by the Trinity Wall Street grant. However, we ask each participating congregation to contribute $750 a year toward the $1.2 million dollar cost of the program.

What if a $750 per year contribution is beyond the means of our congregation? There are a number of ways we can help congregations whose budgets are stretched too thin:

  • Quarterly, monthly, and weekly payment plans are available (e.g., $15/week).
  • Partial scholarships are available for congregations that can demonstrate financial need.
  • Parishioners may make a designated contribution to the FaithX VIP Scholarship on behalf of their parish.