In order to support groups and congregations, our pool of trained facilitators are available to visit congregations. They can run workshops or facilitated meetings on a number of subjects, from helping to plan a vision for the future to resolving conflicts and providing general advice and support.
These services are provided by the Facilitation Services Action Group (FSAG) who can be contacted through the Local Leadership Strategy Group (LLSG). We hope to help congregations to work well together so that they will thrive. Areas where FSAG may be able to help your Unitarian congregation or fellowship include:
Facilitating Vision Meetings
Our facilitators can help set priorities for the future in order to achieve your church's potential. Whether this is to attract new visitors from the local community or plan a major social action project, an external facilitator can provide both focus and alternative perspective. If you would like to invite a facilitator, contact LLSG.
The Congregational Assessment Process (CAP) provides feedback on your congregational practice. The process is in the form of a questionnaire which thoroughly covers all aspects of congregational life and functioning. Normally the consultation takes place over a weekend by two facilitators: Questionnaire interviews are conducted on the Saturday. After experiencing Sunday worship, the facilitators meet with the congregation to discuss and agree on achievable goals. Ultimately, it is then up to the congregation to implement the changes required, with the encouragement of the facilitators. If you feel your congregation would benefit from this process, please contact us through the LLSG.
If your congregation is experiencing a conflict, which you are finding it difficult to resolve internally, please consider requesting conflict resolution facilitation. Two trained facilitators will visit the congregation to speak to all the individuals involved and then hold a facilitated meeting to resolve the issues and set a plan for the future. You can contact the LLSG confidentially.
Engagement Groups Support
Many congregations run discussion groups and programmes using ‘engagement group’ principles. The name ‘engagement group’ denotes that the group is run according to a particular intention, set of principles, session structure, and style of facilitation/leadership. There is great flexibility – groups may be open or closed, time–limited or continuing, and on a huge variety of themes. We offer support to those leading engagement groups through the Facilitation and Group Life module of our Modular Training Scheme.
Buddying – Keeping in Touch (work in progress)
Recognising that congregations sometimes find it difficult to connect to the work of the GA, we will be developing systems to ensure that congregations are fully supported by GA services. This began with the Big Red Phone Survey in 2012/13 and will continue in various other ways. We hope to improve the way that congregations connect with GA services and resources.