Church in Helsinki

Church in Helsinki project drives change through genuine dialogue

Helsinki Parish executed an extensive operational and cultural change project, based on collaboration and crowd sourcing right from the start. As a result, Helsinki parishes are doing things better and more collectively, while simultaneously scaling down practices that do not work. Collective reflection was utilized widely during all stages of this change project.

The Virtual Brainstorming of Helsinki parishes invited citizens to have their say, and to participate in the development of parish activities during the spring of 2016. Prior to this, the cultural change project was initially discussed internally among the parish staff during 2015.

The results were used as base material for group development, and to assist in defining new actions. When the direction for change was first internally defined, citizens were invited to comment and evaluate on actions that emerged from the Virtual Brainstorming. Parishioners were also asked to propose other improvement points for church operations. In addition, actions that would make daily life easier were asked about as well. This Virtual Brainstorming attracted more than 1500 participations.

The aim of the discussion was both to inform about Church activities, as well as to find out whether the internal plans were in sync with the parishioners’ wishes. The results validated that the Church is developing into the right direction, and in addition multiple different development areas were suggested to further develop the change plan. The results are now used in the internal development work of the parishes.

This Virtual Brainstorming was a continuation of another Virtual Brainstorming executed during the fall of 2012. Ideas captured at that time influenced the “Church in Helsinki” strategy. That project was discussed internally among the church staff and the church supervisory body. At that time, among other things, the strategy, its’ implementation and what the strategy is lacking were discussed.

Further information: Maarit Viik-Kajander