Kingdom People Checklist exercise for churches
This checklist has been designed to help churches take a ‘health check’ and identify ways in which they can be more effective as signs and agents of God’s Kingdom.
The checklist is part of the booklet created by Archdeacon Roger Morris called Signs of the Kingdom.
All churchwardens should have received 10 copies each but you can also download the whole booklet from here.
- Download 'Signs of the Kingdom' (PDF)
Who should use this checklist?
This is a particularly useful exercise for a Church Council or Leadership Group ‐ helping them to identify the church's future priorities. It can also be used with a whole congregation or at a parish away day.
In 2012, the PCC of Great Malvern Priory undertook a similar exercise and made use of a website called ‘SurveyMonkey’ (www.surveymonkey.com) in order to maximise the number of people who could participate in the exercise.
The PCC then looked at the responses to the ‘health check’ survey (including various comments that had been invited alongside the numerical ‘score’).
Beyond undertaking the actual exercise outlined in this book, a church will need to reﬂect further on what action it is to take and how progress is then to be monitored.
Steps to completing the checklist
The exercise is best undertaken in three hours (with breaks) ‐ perhaps as part of an away day for the PCC or congregation. It can be done in two evening sessions (each around 2 hours long) or in a (shortened) form in one 90 minute session.
- Do the checklist exercise
Introduce the Eight Characteristics then individuals score the church on each of the eight characteristics. This is done individually without conferring.
- Create the group checklist
Transfer individual scores onto a ﬂipchart to demonstrate the proﬁle of the church.
- Reﬂect on the checklist
Identify current strengths as well as what might be holding you back. Notice too any diﬀerences in your perceptions.
- Identify what needs working on
Develop a group list of issues from reﬂecting on the checklist. This list should highlight clear mission priorities as well as speciﬁc areas needing attention.
- Take action
Having agreed the main areas that need attention, priorities for speciﬁc actions need to be identiﬁed which will best address the issues raised. A plan of action should be drawn up.
The checklist and scoring
The scoresheet below can be found in the booklet.
For each of the eight characteristics, your church should score themselves as follows:
6 this is a strength
5 there is evidence of much of this
4 we are making progress in this area
3 there is some evidence of this
2 there are only a few signs of this
1 this is a weakness
The eight characteristics
These are the charateristics against which you will be scoring yourselves:
1. Deeply rooted in prayer and study of the scriptures
- there is a recognition of the importance of prayer and a spontaneous desire for it
- people are encouraged to develop and grow in their personal discipline of prayer and devotion
- the church’s programme includes opportunities for prayer and reﬂection such as quiet days and retreats
- prayer precedes as well as accompanies all of the church’s work
2. Renewed and transformed by regular worship
- there is an expectation that people will meet with God in worship and be transformed by the experience
- worship expresses the whole of life: its ups and its downs, hopes and fears, politics and problems
- reﬂection and stillness are encouraged through eﬀective use of time and space
- people talk about worship in a positive way
3. Equipped to witness to the Gospel of love, compassion, justice and freedom
- people are encouraged to tell their stories of what God has done and is doing in their lives
- an enquirers group or course is regularly oﬀered for those wanting to know more about the Christian faith
- time is set aside for speciﬁc events that share the gospel with those on the fringe or outside the church
- people are encouraged, trained and equipped to be eﬀective in their witness to God and his Kingdom
4. Dedicated to helping children and young people to belong and be nurtured in faith
- provision is made for children and young people to learn about the Christian faith during the Sunday services
- the church makes the most of opportunities to engage with children and young people in schools and colleges
- children and young people are involved in the life of the church (from decision making to ministry and mission)
- there is a strategy for engaging with unchurched children and young people
5. Devoted to growing deeply as disciples, oﬀering our time, talents and money to God
- discipleship training embraces the whole of life ‐ personal habits and public commitments, thoughts and actions
- relationships are nurtured so that people feel accepted and are helped to grow in faith and be eﬀective in action
- the church’s programme includes provision for small groups, mentoring, short courses and Bible study
- people are encouraged to give sacriﬁcially of their time, energy and resources
6. Resourced and released to minister to others
- the church and its people are open to the Spirit’s leading about what they should be and do
- the diﬀerent gifts and experiences of all are valued and given expression in and beyond the life of the church
- all ministries are exercised within a collaborative team in which mutual support and accountability are encouraged
- vocations to authorised, licensed and ordajined ministries are prayed for and encouraged
7. Ready to engage with and serve our community
- the church has an outward looking focus and engages with the whole of life and with the wider community
- the church works in partnership with others in order to meet the needs of local people (especially the poor)
- the church is passionate and prophetic about love, compassion, justice and freedom, locally and globally
- occasional oﬃces such as weddings, baptisms and funerals make sense of life and communicate faith
8. Committed to making our buildings ﬁt for purpose
- as a spiritual and community resource the church building is accessible during daylight hours
- prayers are oﬀered in the church building on a daily basis
- buildings have been sensitively adapted so that they oﬀer hospitality to all kinds of groups, meetings and activities
- there is a strategy for encouraging and welcoming visitors to the church