Disciple Maker Index Survey
★ The Survey will open Monday, February 6, 2017
How was the Disciple Maker Index survey created?
Catholic Leadership Institute gathered 100 bishops, priests, diocesan officials, parish leaders and authors/thought leaders (Sherry Weddell, Matthew Kelly, etc) to a 2-day think tank on parish engagement which produced some initial hypothesis. CLI then took a smaller group of the same constituents and crafted the survey. After that, CLI shared the survey with 15 bishops for feedback and edit. This will be the fourth year of the Disciple Maker Index, and more than 15 Dioceses and over 50,000 parishioners have taken part in the survey over the last three years.
Can we add unique questions about our parish to the survey?
Not at this time. Part of the value of the survey is to see results benchmarked against other parishes around the country. All participating parishes will be taking the survey at the same time and the consistency allows for the benchmarking. Additionally, it keeps the survey from getting too long. Catholic Leadership Institute is evaluating this possibility for future years.
This survey looks like it is geared to people in the pews. Aren’t we supposed to be going after “the lost” or those not present in our pews?
The survey will most likely be completed by people who are coming with some degree of regularity to your parish. The survey results will tell you what about the parish is keeping them coming as well as things that might be prompting them to start falling away. Both of these elements will help inform how we can reach out to those completely detached from the parish. Additionally, it is our belief that a primary strategy to reaching the lost has to be more deeply engaging and equipping those who are present in our pews. How can we equip those in our pews to be disciple makers? These results will aid in that greatly.
Numbers, graphs, likelihood to recommend, this sounds like a lot of corporate language and consumer mentality. This is the Catholic Church not the Home Depot.
Remember all of the graphs and numbers are the aggregated voice of your people who have taken time to give you their feedback. Evangelization will always be best on a 1-1 basis. Understanding where your people are from a macro view allows you and others to “meet them where they are.” We do ask some parishioner satisfaction questions – these are to help you identify if there are any barriers or opportunities to help aid in your pastoral outreach. The Disciple Maker Index also asks the individual parishioner to reflect on their discipleship and practice of their faith in order to get past the consumer mentality and into a discipleship/mission mentality.
About the Survey Results
How will the Disciple Maker Index results be shared with parishioners?
Those staff and parishioners who the pastor invites to be a part of the consultation day or planning process will get the full survey report. We do not advise sharing the whole report with all of your parishioners because it is a lot of information and needs to be put in context. We suggest that you summarize what you have learned, highlight 2-3 things to celebrate and 2-3 opportunities. Catholic Leadership Institute has sample bulletin inserts and communication pieces to assist you and we can also work with you to craft the most helpful summary and update. It is important to both thank and share some reflection of what you learned from the survey with parishioners in addition to incorporating it appropriately in your plans for the future.
What about confidentiality? With whom will my parish’s results be shared? How about individual parishioner’s responses?
We take confidentiality of the parishioners very seriously. We want them to provide honest feedback. No one in the diocese or on your parish staff - including the pastor - will have access to individual parishioner responses. Likewise any email addresses or contact information provided will be saved on secure servers and not released for any purpose other than distribution of the survey. As for your parish’s results, your results will be shared with you and those key leaders you bring with you to the consultation day or planning process. Catholic Leadership Institute will not share your parish’s individual data without your expressed written permission. If one of your parishes receives the highest feedback on a particular question (liturgy, preaching, social outreach), that will be indicated on every parish’s report in an effort to share best practice.
How long does the survey take to complete?
What is the youngest age able to complete the survey?
Keeping in mind local diocesan and civic policies, Catholic Leadership Institute recommends that only individuals 18 years of age and older complete the survey.