Origins of the Congregational Vitality Project
The Congregational Vitality Project started as a way to better understand how congregations are living out God’s mission in their contexts. Frustrated by traditional measures of butts and bucks, in 2009, Linda Bobbitt (Vice President of the Rocky Mountain Synod from 2005-2013) in consultation with the ELCA Research and Evaluation department began work to develop a simple, statistically reliable and valid survey that looks at the outcomes of ministry in terms of how it connects with God, each other and the world. The project continues by working to understand what factors contribute to or distract from vitality and how those factors might be intentionally addressed to improve vitality.
Linda worked in Health and Human Services for 15 years where she specialized in outcomes measurement and program evaluation after reciving an M.S. in Counseling Psychology. Linda now works as an independent contractor helping denominations, synods/regions/conferences and congregations add a new dimension to how they measure vitality. Linda is also a student at Luther Seminary studying Congregational Mission and Leadership.
Bobbitt, Linda. Creating Shorter Scales to Measure Congregational Vitality. Review of Religious Research (2015/07/01 2015): 1-2.
Bobbitt, L.( 2014), Measuring Congregational Vitality: Phase 2 Development of an Outcome Measurement Tool. Review of Religious Research. 56: 467-484. DOI 10.1007/s13644-014-0158-1
See Research page for more information