Parish Leadership Resources
In this section, you will find resources that support the work and formation of lay leaders in the church.
ECF Vital Practices offers parish leaders, including vestry members, the resources and tools to respond to the changing needs of the Church.
FACTS on Church Growth
A look at the dynamics of growth and decline in Episcopal congregations based on the 2014 Survey of Episcopal Congregations. To view the entire report, visit the Episcopal Church website here to download a copy. A brief summary, Key Characteristics of Congregations Experiencing Growth, has been prepared by the Rev. Jason Lewis. You can download it here.
ChurchNext has numerous paid and free online courses in various topics for parish leaders.
The Alban Institute at Duke Divinity School provides educational materials, books, publications and consulting services for clergy and congregations. Membership gets you a weekly e-mail and a book discount.
Child and Youth Resources for Formation within the youth and young adults in your parish or diocese.
The Diocese of Western North Carolina offers an annual weekend retreat designed specifically for vestries of small churches. Vestry members spend time with the bishop and members of his staff learning about their roles and responsibilities; financial oversight; and time for parish planning.
Vestry Leadership Day
Annual Saturday conference for vestry members, Treasurers and Wardens to meet with the Bishop and members of his staff for direct guidance on roles and responsibilities, leadership development and financial oversight. A combined copy of the 2022 presentations can be found here.
A comprehensive guide, prepared by the Diocese of Western North Carolina, on the responsibilities and roles of the Vestry.
Vestry Resource Guide
The Vestry Resource Guide offers an approach for leaders of congregations and faith communities to work together to become an effective, even transformational leadership team. The full guide is available for $15 from Forward Movement here. A free preview is also available at that link.
The Diocese of Western North Carolina will offer an annual gathering for church leaders to learn strategies and best practices on planned giving at the parish level. For more information on these gatherings, please contact Canon Augusta Anderson.
The Partnership for ReNEWal (PfR) acts as a midwife for new ways of being church, enabling churches to be agile, resilient, and intentional about living into their divine purpose in today’s shifting religio-cultural environment. Focusing on servant-leadership development and a transformed approach to year-long stewardship, PfR provides concrete goals, tools, and continuing support for the journey.
provides the tools to inspire radical generosity and financial stewardship and equip faith communities in this life-changing work. Project Resource programs will be taught throughout the Diocese of Western North Carolina in the coming months.
The Episcopal Network for Stewardship (TENS)
The Diocese of Western North Carolina is a member of the Episcopal Network for Stewardship (TENS), which is an association of church leaders who understand, practice, and proclaim God's call to generosity.
Ecumenical Stewardship Center (ESC)
The ESC is a dynamic and interactive network which connects, inspires, and equips stewardship leaders to transform their churches in faithful and generous givers.
Every Episcopalian is commissioned in baptism to proclaim by word and example the loving, liberating, and life-giving good news of Jesus Christ. Through the spiritual practice of evangelism, we name and celebrate Jesus’ loving presence in the stories of all people - then invite everyone to join us in the journey of faith. The Episcopal Church has prepared this Evangelism Toolkit to help us live into that call.
Other evangelism resources from The Episcopal Church can be found here.
At once “travel guide” and vision for the future, the Transformation series is good news for the Episcopal Church at a time of fast and furious demographic and social change.