Responses to “Waller and Associates” Presentation:

Peggy Jensen – what experience have you Rob Waller have had in other Dioceses?

Rob Waller – Diocese of Ottawa did a study and moved forward, but did not have all clergy on board. They did a lot of good worked hoped to raise $30 million but cut it down to $12 million and achieved that objective.  Your Diocese is talking about doing something a little bit different.

Archbishop Privett – Kootenay Diocese is in year and a half of a five year campaign. We discovered challenges we needed to prepare for. Hadn’t done significant campaign in 40 years. We have had a very successful campaign. We challenged each parish to come up with its own vision. 12% of our parishes have not yet become involved.

Question: I didn’t buy into the Sacred Journey until I came here and for me hearing about his experience it was very humbling. My concern is that it’s a big leap moving to financial implementation. We have to understand how important it is to communicate to the average parish member. To communicate and resonate and acknowledge where they are and where they thing they are and how they can participate.

Ian Alexander – you need critical mass before you get rolling but don’t need unanimity.

Question – about methodology of the report. We have some 7,000 parishioners and you did 100 interviews/questionnaires. Seems a very low number. Is that enough to make conclusions for the whole of the Diocese? Or is this not an indication of a level of apathy.

this journey is all about leadership. So, when you do a study, you want to give an opportunity for anybody who wanted to speak. But we were really interested in hearing from leaders. This is a standard way of doing studies as a base for recommendations. It is a very reliable sample.

Based on everything we have heard today, what are the most important next steps for us to take as a Diocese as we continue travelling together on this Vision Fulfillment Journey?


We need parish specific vision implementation plans

Presenting Waller Report to parishes with information to parishes to distribute

Make sure really resources to parishes

We need to learn about collaborating and working together across areas and regions

Dealing with trust issues is the most important thing to do – this is a job for the regional deans to go into every parish and ask why they mistrust the Diocese and work on healing in each parish so trust can be re-built. The Diocese is all of us; it is not that office in Victoria.

We need to become intentional about leveraging emergent opportunities.

Pause and celebrate what’s right right now. Let’s celebrate.

The trust issue is urgent. We need to rebuild clergy fellowship.

If you communicate with us, if you put relationship building at the front, that will address the trust in the communities. It is altogether.

Don’t like the concept loss of trust. We are really talking about a lack of confidence. There were too few interviews particularly on the southern Gulf Islands. Is part of the pause carrying out further interviews. Diocese is always walking on egg shells.

Reconciliation is not working. You can’t sell it by talking about money. We have to go back and sell the dream.

Communication to parishes needs to be a priority. We want to walk away from this Synod knowing we are going to implement this because this is important.

There must be a trust building strategy on the part of the Diocese.

Lack of trust and confidence – support some of the discussion that is happening here about pilot parishes, the opportunity for using those parishes as magnet schools. From a First Nations perspective it is a good opportunity for us to meet with other people who want to know and to gain some knowledge into the church’s role in colonialization. The churches participated in the land grab. There is a lot we can learn from the pilot parishes. The lack of confidence… not everybody is going to want to come to the table. There are some people who are just observers, followers. We may not get to 100% agreement. People who attend the Synod need to share the information and be the trainers in their parishes. This is like preaching to the converted. We get ourselves all educated, but we don’t bring it back to the people. And we need to have some criteria to let us know when we are actually accomplishing the goal. People who are hurting need to be heard so they can heal. I think this is where I am myself having been a residential school survivor. I need to be heard. Sometimes it’s not well accepted by people who don’t want to hear what I have to say about the actions of churches towards people like me, a person of colour. We have to develop the listening heart.

Motion: Synod encourages DC to approve and facilitate at an appropriate time, pilot fund-raising projects in which parishes collaborate with the diocese, along the lines suggested in the Waller Report.

I like the general thrust of the motion. But we need to get away from the focus on the fundraising.

Ammended Motion: Synod encourages approves and facilitate at an appropriate time, pilot projects in which parishes collaborate with the diocese, along the lines suggested in the Waller Report.

The pilot parishes should be chosen to include less keen parishes.

yesterday some of this material was presented as a listening Synod, not a Synod in which we were going to do something. We seem suddenly to be changing to doing something. And I would be very wary about that.

I experienced people eager to speak and be heard. I am concerned that to move to a vote on this action does not allow people to be heard and does not build trust. If we are going to do a Diocesan wide fundraising initiative, we would likely employ professionals. Are we now suggesting we would hire professionals to do the pilot project or are we going to put this onto our already heavily taxed staff.

I would like to urge Synod to vote against this motion. I am excited by the enthusiasm of wanting to get on with it. But I believe this is premature. There’s a lot of variables to this motion. It seems vague. We should focus our energies on our vision fund.

Motion is tabled.