NCLS Q&A

How Much Does it Cost?

The cost of participation in the 2016 National Church Life Survey is

  • $250* participation fee per church/parish/group entity
  • plus $1.50* per survey form ordered.

Small churches: For small churches with less than 30 attenders, a flat rate of $250 applies. (No additional cost for survey forms ordered).

* Note that the above costs do not include GST

Participating churches will be provided with a survey kit including their ordered surveys, full instructions, promotional material and worship service resources to assist leaders in running the survey at their church. The cost provides Attender Surveys ordered, for churchgoers aged 15 years and over; as well as Children’s Surveys ordered, for churchgoers aged 8 to 14. Leader Surveys for ministry leaders and staff; and an Operations Survey for a church administrator are provided at no extra cost.

Can I get financial help so our church can participate?

We would seriously encourage all churches to participate in this year’s NCLS. The costs associated with participating are extremely reasonable given the type of data being collected and the report provided to churches. The benefits for ongoing healthy ministry and strategic planning for churches far outweighs the cost of participating. We would encourage churches to see the costs as an investment in ongoing healthy ministry.

However, for the small number of churches who might find the costs of participating in the NCLS a little beyond their capacity some financial assistance is available. If the cost is a barrier to participating in the NCLS please contact Ian Altman to discuss your needs.

Why should my church participate in the NCLS?

Every church benefits from taking time to reflect and review. Having an opportunity to listen to all the voices in a congregation can help church leaders to discover the strengths, hopes, discernments and personal commitment of their attenders.

For ten more reasons why your church should patriciate see: Ten Reasons Why Your Church Should Participate In The NCLS

  1. To hear all the voices from your church

Hear the attitudes and beliefs of all people at your church, including those who don’t always get heard: ministers, lay leaders, adult attenders, youth and children.

  1. Make better choices

Use a credible evidence base to inform your discussions and decisions. Discern where best to place your energy and direction, based on your survey feedback.

  1. Find out the things you need to know

As mission researchers, the NCLS team know things about what you care about. Doing a nation-wide survey helps churches to learn from each other and allows leaders to identify key trends.

  1. Find out the giftings and hopes of attenders

Receive a list of areas where your attenders are gifted and motivated to act. Harness their energy, motivation and hopes to move forward. Encourage all to contribute their gifts and skills.

  1. Take stock of your church’s health

Beyond counting heads, use the NCLS Research framework of church vitality to assess nine core qualities and three attendance measures, at regular times in your church’s journey.

  1. Identify your strengths and use them to grow

Survey results will show where your church’s strengths lie. Identify your strengths and use them to inform areas of growth. Our planning resources are strengths-based, the best place to start when making any change.

  1. See how you compare

We give realistic comparisons to similar churches, so you can see how you’re tracking alongside other churches like yours. Use this gauge to set realistic goals and expectations.

  1. Sustain and support leaders

Understand what contributes to sustainable and effective leadership practices in churches, to better equip and develop your leaders in ministry.

  1. Add to the profile of your denomination and the Australian church

Association leadership team will use the overall information about our churches to inform our pastoral and strategic leadership into the future. It’s important that all our churches be a part of the overall profile of our Baptist Association.

  1. Inform wider Australian society and beyond

Describe the story of modern Australian churches to wider society to challenge myths. Researchers around the world will also learn from the experiences of Australian churches

How should the NCLS Survey be conducted?

Previous experience suggests that the most effective way to run the survey is to set aside 20 minutes in the middle of the service for people to complete it. Anyone who needs more time can complete it at the end. We suggest you avoid special events e.g. Baptisms, to give you a more regular and reliable sample of attenders.

Many churches have found that it is best placed during intercessions, with worshippers asked to commend to God the different aspects of church life which the questions explore. In this case, the survey forms would be filled in after prayer, and when completed, presented with the offering.

Others set aside time before the closing song and blessing, in which case participants could be asked to think about their answers in the light of their being ‘sent forth’ to continue their part in God’s mission.

Are there any other resources?

You will find some helpful information about the NCLS here – http://www.2016ncls.org.au/announcing-2016-ncls

Video – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ALliEulCVCA

Worship & Prayer Resources – http://www.2016ncls.org.au/promote/worship-resources

Survey Order Forms if you cannot use the online form – http://www.2016ncls.org.au/survey-order-form There is no payment needed at this time – just register and order the forms.