WLS© for parish and apostolic renewal
SSI will offer two distinct services utilizing the WLS©.
- The WLS© can first be utilized as a stand-alone analysis. In this format, the pastor, faith formation team and the faithful can get an analytic “snapshot” of the faith community that provides dynamic pastoral and apostolic planning information.
- Faith communities can also contract with SSI to run a full research protocol utilizing the Forty Weeks program. When the WLS© is used in conjunction with weekly tracking surveys, a community can powerfully renew their faith together and build a positive apostolic vision for the parish’s future. The Forty Weeks program in conjunction with the 40 week research protocol is akin to a faith community making a 40 week retreat together and being able to understand the impact of that retreat on individual lives and the entire faith community at retreat’s end. It is an immensely valuable and powerful path to parish faith and apostolic renewal.
Reaching the “Peripheries” of the Heart
Pope Benedict XVI encouraged the Society of Jesus “to reach the geographical and spiritual places where others do not reach or find it difficult to reach.” This same mission has been an overriding theme of Pope Francis as well. Many of those “geographic and spiritual places” are the interior world of the human heart that individuals, due to stress and distraction, have lost touch with.
Research can help us better understand how the ancient truths of the Faith can be communicated to the people of our day in ways that are authentic to Tradition, effective, transformative and sustainable. That is why SSI’s mission to conduct integral research is one of our two main priorities. We want to help produce spiritual programs and resources that will enable individuals explore those interior places of the heart where the challenges of life meet the Merciful Christ who is our Way, our Truth and our Light.
Why Catholic Research?
SSI is pioneering a new research methodology to join the spiritual, psychological, and medical healing arts of the Catholic Tradition. Our goal in this synergistic approach is to accelerate development of targeted pastoral applications of the time-tested Ignatian spiritual disciplines so everyone can faithfully live life as a sacred story, in light of the challenges life presents. In this work, we desire to reveal Christ as the Divine Physician.
Applying rigorous survey research design and statistical methodologies in the collection and analysis of participant feedback, we are able to assess program efficacy, identify areas for improvement and develop new tools and resources. All research protocols begin by using the WLS© to collect information about a participant’s life experiences, family structure, faith traditions/practice, and so on. As participants journey through a protocol, we collect additional information such as their experiences with the program, their understanding of program materials, their commitment level and frequency of faith activity. Our method produces a robust body of data for evaluating what works in transmitting the Faith, for whom and under what circumstances.
All Sacred Story research is modeled on Institutional Review Board (IRB) protocols, and all SSI researchers and employees sign confidentiality agreements. All analysis will be scrubbed of any personal identifiers to reveal only trends and/or issues present in groups participating in the renewal programs.