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The Parish Paper is a monthly electronic newsletter that offers ideas and insights for active congregations. Edited by Herb Miller, Lyle Schaller and Cynthia Woolever, this journal is available to all Hawai’i Conference church members and clergy to use within their ministry. You are invited to include items from The Parish Paper in your newsletters and on your website or webpage. You may also reprint items and send to others through email or the U.S. mail.


The Hawai‘i Conference UCC’s purchase of a subscription to The Parish Paper includes:


  1. Permission to provide copies to our staff and to the congregations within our jurisdiction in any of the following ways: E-mail, Postal, newspaper, newsletter, meetings, training events, and our website.

  2. Permission for each congregation within our jurisdiction to (a) photocopy or electronically distribute for local use as many copies as it needs, (b) post them on its website, and (c) quote sentences and paragraphs.


Congregations within the Hawai‘i Conference UCC to which we distribute The Parish Paper do not have permission (a) to delete the copyright ownership notice, (b) to re-write, paraphrase, delete, or change the wording of sentences and paragraphs, or (c) to give any third party—other than our staff and constituents—permission to photocopy or reprint (in any quantity, no matter how small, whether for free distribution or for sale).


Download Issues of The Parish Paper:

June 2022: Small Groups Are the Church’s Past and Future (final edition)

May 2022: Reaching Out to Low-Income Neighbors

April 2022: New Life for Older Buildings

March 2022: Bringing a Community Project into Focus

February 2022: Prepare for Community Engagement through Study

January 2022: Planning the Future by Appreciating the Past

December 2021: How to Plan a Community Project

November 2021: Thinking Flexibly about Our Buildings

October 2021: Get to Know the Neighborhood with a Community Tour

September 2021: Bringing the Power of Groups to Prison Ministry

August 2021: Build Lasting Strength through Community Development

July 2021: Is Drive-In Church a Good Idea? ​

June 2021: Is it Time to Relocate?

May 2021: How Can We Overcome Barriers to Vaccination?

April 2021: Readiness Is the Key to Congregational Change

March 2021: How Can We Build Trust in a Vaccine?

February 2021: Connect with Spiritual Seekers through the Arts

January 2021: Build a Robust Network

December 2020: Using Surveys to Guide Decision Making

November 2020: Building Relationships in Livestream Worship

October 2020: How to Foster Deep Listening Amid Political Difference

September 2020: Getting Started with Livestreaming

August 2020: Hospitality: Offering a Third Place to Gather​

July 2020: Care, Leadership, and Self-Renewal in Uncertain Times

June 2020: Six Tools for Managing Volunteers

May 2020: Congregations Can Learn New Habits

April 2020: Enlist Specialists to Improve Outreach Ministry

March 2020: What Is the Emerging Church?

February 2020: Get to Know the Community through Mapping

January 2020: Repurpose Worship Space Don't Rebuild

December 2019: Writing as a Tool for Community Engagement 

November 2019: Learning to Love Variety in Worship Song Selection

October 2019: Let’s Take a Walk: The Ministry of Accompaniment

September 2019: A Team Approach to Worship Design

August 2019: Learn More about Your Congregation through Focus Groups

July 2019: Team Talk Can Strengthen Volunteer Ministry

June 2019: Overcome Volunteer Burnout by Building Capacity

May 2019: Tips for Starting and Managing a Worship Band

April 2019: Building Your Community Ties with a Block Party

March 2019: Media Technology for Worship

December 2018: Getting to Know Our Neighbors

November 2018: How to Develop Habits for Well-Being

October 2018: Don’t Disagree, Deliberate

September 2018: Checking Up on Clergy Health
August 2018: How to Raise Money for Your Community Projects
July 2018: Inviting Informing and Including Newcomers

June 2018: Making the Nursery a Place of Belonging

May 2018: How to Balance Hospitality and Church Security

April 2018: Church Energy Use: Can We Harness Hope?

March 2018: Finding Significance as a Small Church

February 2018: Best Practices for Church Members Serving as Staff

January 2018: 18 Questions for 2018

December 2017: Does Our Pastor Need a Job Description?

November 2017: Mistakes Churches Make During an Interim Ministry

October 2017: Short-Term Mission Trips that Yield Long-Term Success

September 2017: Equipping Volunteers Builds a Strong Church Community

August 2017: What Promotes Hope?

July 2017: How Can We Help Immigrants?

June 2017: Ministry in the Midst of Tragedy

May 2017: Financing the Local Church: What Does It Cost?

April 2017: Small Is Big Again: Reclaiming Small Church Ministry

March 2017: Guide to Good Governance

February 2017: How Do Congregations Respond to Interfaith Couples?

January 2017: Conquering the Cutback Syndrome

December  2016: Can We Wait for God's Spark?

November 2016: Does Your Congregation Suffer from Anxiety?

October 2016: Keeping Up with the Pastor's Pay: Trends Behind Clergy Wages

September 2016: What Keeps Congregations from Implementing New Ideas?

August 2016: Multiple Roads to a Multicultural Congregation

July 2016: When Charity Brings Anything But Relief

June 2016: Making Congregations Greener

May 2016: How Do New People Hear about Your Church?

April 2016: How To Deal with Church Conflict

March 2016: What Numbers Matter for Congregations? Lessons from Five-Year Trends

February 2016: The Payday Lending Crisis: What Can Congregations Do?

January 2016: How Ministry Teams Get Things Done

December 2015: Improving Church Communication

November 2015: Navigating the Currents of Endowments and Reserve Funds

October 2015: New Models for New Churches: What Works?

September 2015: Can Congregations Reach Young Adults?

August 2015: How To Enhance the Ministry of Associate Pastors

July 2015: Congregational Strength Is Always Plural

June 2015: Could Lack of Curiosity Kill the Church?

May 2015: Seeking a Bivocational Calling for Pastors and Churches

April 2015: Finding God's New Call in the Same Place

March 2015: What Churches Can Do to Increase Social Media Security

February 2015: How to Avoid the Potholes on the Road to Retirement

January 2015: Our Future Pastors: Assessing the State of the Pipeline

December 2014: How to Make the Most of a Consulting Process

November 2014: Should We Consider Closing Our Church?

October 2014: How Can We Prevent Suicide?

September 2014: Back to School: How Churches Can Parter with Local Schools

August 2014: Do Your Mission and Method Fit Your Size?

July 2014: What Type of Follower Attends Our Church?

June 2014: Caring for the Caregivers

May 2014: How to Welcome Children with Autism and Their Families

April 2014: eGiving: It’s about More Than Money

March 2014: When Less Is More: The Consequences of Clergy Turnover

February 2014: A Parable about Pastoral Leadership

January 2014: Big Ministry Trends for 2014

December 2013: Why a Sense of Belonging Matters

November 2013: E-Newsletters: Worth More Than You Know

October 2013: Growth or Decline? 10 Key Questions about Worship Attendance

September 2013: Disaster Relief: Congregations in the Eye of the Storm

August 2013: Clergy Groups: Are They Worth the Investment?

July 2013: The Great Recession: Its Effects on Congregations and What We Learned

June 2013: Making Informed Decisions during Times of Change

May 2013: Important Conversations: How to Avoid the Sand Traps

April 2013: Oral Communication: How to Strengthen Our Effectiveness

March 2013: What Leadership Style Works in Our Church?

February 2013: Can You Downsize Staff Without Destroying Your Congregation?

January 2013: How to Avoid Pastor Burnout

December 2012: How to Use Our Five Senses to Experience the Wonder of Advent

November 2012: How to Maintain Church Health in a Declining Population County

October 2012: Preventing Church Fraud

September 2012: Where Are the Unchurched?

August 2012: Keys to Growing a Small Church

July 2012: What Message Are We Sending about Giving?

June 2012: Mission Possible: More Men in the Pews

May 2012: How to Turn Bystanders into Active Disciples

April 2012: How Is Your Congregation’s Health?

March 2012: What Type of Future Are We Building?

February 2012: How to Manage Change Resistance

January 2012: How to Perfect Your Leadership Triangle

December 2011: How Do We Successfully Launch a New Project?

November 2011: Should We Unleash the Power of Congregational Planning?

October 2011: Why Do Smart Churches Make Dumb Decisions?

September 2011: Why Do People Connect with Christ and a Congregation?

August 2011: How to Prevent Bad Behavior During Times of Change

July 2011: How to Select Quality Staff

June 2011: What is the Pastor’s Role in Church Finances?

May 2011: When Does Success Lead to Failure?

April 2011: Incoming Pastors: Building Smoother Transition Bridges

March 2011: Does a Congregation’s Location Influence Its Effectiveness?

February 2011: Accomplishing Worthy Goals–Being Smart Is not Enough

January 2011: What Is Your Unconscious Intent?

December 2010: Fifty Years Later

November 2010: What Are the Big-Picture Trends in Congregations?

October 2010: Why Are Worship Visitors Important?

September 2010: Planning for the Unexpected Financial Crisis

August 2010: How Much Should We Pay Our Pastor

July 2010: Should Congregations Use Internet Social Media?

June 2010: Why Does Mentoring Succeed and Fail?

May 2010: Generous Givers: A Product of Motivation and Methods

April 2010: What Can We Learn from the Emerging Church Movement?

March 2010: New Trends in Belonging

February 2010: Become Comfortable with Conflict: Step One to Moving Beyond It!

January 2010: Should We Fine-Tune Our Church’s Internal Culture?

December 2009: Are We a Leader-Sending Congregation?

November 2009: Seven Roads to a Multicultural Congregation

October 2009: Women Pastors: Are Our Assumptions Accurate?

September 2009: Do We Sing All Five Worship-Hymn Preferences?

August 2009: Shepherding Churches through Grief Storms

July 2009: Lay Testamonials Strengthen Giving

June 2009: One Congregation: Many Locations

May 2009: Permanent Endowment Fund: Blessing and Temptation

April 2009: What do People Want in Their Pastors?

March 2009: Going into all the World: Church Website Basics

February 2009: Should Our Congregations Offer More Choices?

January 2009: How to Identify Our Church’s Unstated Assumptions

December 2008: Does Your Window Limit Your View?

November 2008: The Fun Factor Asset in Congregational Climate

October 2008: Requirements for Membership: Which Ones Matter?

September 2008: The Change Agent’s Checklist

August 2008: How Does Church Size Impact Decision-making?

July 2008: Giving to Congregations: Have Patterns Changed?

June 2008: “Teaching Moments” Strengthen Governing Board Meetings!

May 2008: How Effective is Our Financial Communication?

April 2008: Making a Good Start with Your New Pastor?

March 2008: Church Members and Community Residents: Match or Mismatch?

February 2008: Shepherding New Ideas through Change-Resistance Minefields

January 2008: What Core Values Drive Our Church?

September 2007: Do We Help People Grow Spiritually?

July 2007: Attracting New People: Are We Building the Bridges?

January 2007: Email: Uses and Misuses in Congregations

June 2006: Financial Stewardship: Myths and Principles

December 2005: The Core Group Drives the Future!

June 2005: Welcoming New People: God is in the Details

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