Reaching New People
Diocese of St Albans

New Worshipping Communities (NWC) Survey explained


Worshipping Community

Your parish or benefice might be working to develop a café church, a messy mass, a walking group, a forest church or a new group meeting in a local school. You may be actively reaching new people through an informal but intentional missional meeting, or a more formal congregation.

The RNP team is now defining a community or congregation like this as a Worshipping Community – a group reaching out to new people and changing lives as it gathers together.

Some Worshipping Communities will be well established, and others will just be beginning to form or will be working to build relationships in their communities, but the underlying vision will be to bring new people to faith, although this may not happen in the early stages of a community’s development.

If you do not feel that what you’re doing fits these definitions, please do contact the RNP team at or the RNP Development Officer in your Archdeaconry for a further conversation.

What Type?

We’ve asked what type of Worshipping Community you have. The survey provides a number of different options but please do enter Other if you cannot find an option that works for you.

A Regular Missional Community meets regularly, often weekly, at the same time but may have a different name and / or format on each occasion.

If you are at the very beginning of your journey on the RNP Development Cycle and you have not decided anything yet, please select the Nothing started yet option and add some comments at end of the survey form if possible.

RNP Development cycle

The RNP Development Cycle is a framework to help you track the progress of your Worshipping Community. It is at the heart of the work of Reaching New People as we support you in changing lives, bringing more people to faith and to making new disciples.

RNP Cycle diagram
  • Explore
    • At the beginning of your journey, prayerful exploring and listening to your community
      • 01 At the Beginning
        Opportunities and potential have yet to be considered. Gearing up to begin through prayer and discernment.
      • 02 Listening
        Listening to God and the people you are called to serve.
  • Integrate
    • Forming and building your intentionally missional Worshipping Community
      • 03 Loving & Serving
        Finding a way to love and serve the people around you.
      • 04 Building Community
        Building community with those you serve.
  • Engage
    • Members of your Worshipping Community becoming or developing as disciples
      • 05 Evangelism & Discipleship
        Sharing the gospel of Christ and offering opportunities for individuals to explore becoming his disciples.
      • 06 Church Taking Shape
        Enabling a fresh expression, mission focused congregation or new form of church, to take shape round those growing in faith through worship, prayer and celebration of the sacraments.
      • 07 Maturing and Doing It Again
        Maturing as a Christian Community and continuing to reach new people. Encouraging members to lead others on a journey of faith and to plant new congregations, churches and Christian Communities where appropriate.

Average attendance

Please provide an average number of attendees for the number of meetings you are reporting on – for example: if you have met four times this term please divide the total number of attendees by four.

Actively growing or exploring discipleship through different ways

We know it can be difficult to measure how people are growing as disciples, so rather than asking you to try to guess, we’re focusing on signs of developing commitment and growth as a follower of Jesus. It is likely that people who are growing in faith will not just be coming along to a gathering – they will probably have shown a desire to learn, study and take a more active part in your particular Worshipping Community. So, we are asking you to tell us how people in your groups are getting involved with things such as…

  • Christian Nurture courses
    • From Alpha and Emmaus to Start and Table Talk
  • Engagement with the Bible
    • Regular reading and exploring as part of a Study group, not part of a Nurture course
  • Involvement in prayer
    • Prayer groups, leading prayers if not part of a Nurture course
  • Days or weekends away
    • Quiet days and retreats
  • Worship and format of your Worshipping Community
    • Through being part of your Worshipping Community – for some just ‘being’ is a key part of their journey
  • Eating together
    • Sharing a meal and conversation if not included elsewhere
  • Serving others in your local community through your Worshipping Community
    • As a result of being part of your Worshipping Community, looking out at serving and helping others in your wider community.

This is not a definitive list and there will be other examples which we would love to hear about under “Other”.

If you are looking for ideas on taking discipleship forward, here is a link to some words that may help you in your thinking – 10 ways to disciple brand new Christians . If you have any information or links that you have found helpful, please email them to and we will create a space on the RNP website to share them with others.

Holy Communion / Eucharist

Encouraging the sharing of bread and wine is becoming a central part of many of our Worshipping Communities. It can take many forms – from a formal Eucharistic prayer in robes with incense to an informal – ‘family meal’ with prayer and scripture readings appropriate to the sacramental act. However it may not be applicable in some settings.

Baptisms and Confirmations

Signs of commitment – developing and growing as disciples

Offering Leadership within

This includes all who step forward to lead within their Worshipping Community, not just those who are “at the front” leading parts or the whole of a gathering but also through offering to take on other roles such as cooking meals, organising crafts, doing the refreshments or setting up a venue – all are signs of leadership.

Impact of a Worshipping Community on Traditional Forms of Worship

We are seeking to understand what impact our Worshipping Communities, as they focus on reaching out to new people, might be having on our established regular traditional forms of worship.

Financial Giving

Generosity is a sign of Christian commitment. People may give their time, resources and money depending on the context of your community.

In some Worshipping Communities giving may be to the parish the community belongs. In others giving will be by donations at each gathering. Our long term aim is for all our Worshipping Communities wherever possible to be sustainable. So, we need to think and plan how sustainability might be achieved in the future. Please tell us what your giving is for your type of Worshipping Community

The stars’ rating

Telling us how you currently feel about your Worshipping Community helps the RNP team to make better sense of the information you’re providing each term and to understand if we are supporting you in the best ways we can.


The team welcomes your comments and feedback to help us to continue to support you

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