press release: In July 2020, the WCC conducted a survey of WI clergy regarding COVID-19 related ministry stressors. WCC staff has been in regular contact with clergy from our member judicatories since the early days of the pandemic made itself known in this state. In response to a growing body of anecdotes regarding pressure on clergy to resume worship in church buildings, frustration with the politicization of the pandemic, family strains, and deteriorating mental and spiritual health, we identified a need to compare perceptions with some of the reality of COVID-19 ministries. Pairing survey results with the knowledge Council staff is privy to through wide-ranging conversations, a more accurate portrait of Christian ministry in Wisconsin begins to appear. The story these more comprehensive results tell is no less unsettling than the anecdotes which led us to conduct the survey, but it does contain some bright spots, and urges serious reflection toward behavior which will be able to sustain clergy and local churches through the rest of the pandemic, and beyond it.
Join us for a webinar on August 27 at 1 pm, when Executive Director Rev. Kerri Parker will present our findings, including information on church activities, human needs ministries, influences on reopening, COVID-19 awareness, and risks to continued employment – as well as recommendations to churches, para-church organizations and wider church bodies. Persons attending the webinar will have first access to our full 16-page report and recommendations, as well as receiving an invitation to reflection groups on our key questions for the church.
Summary here (PDF).