We had the pleasure of chatting with Tom Wanzeck from Our Lady of Loreto Parish in Foxfield, Colorado. Tom was tasked with leading the roll-out of ENGAGE at the parish, and he kindly answered a few questions for us about their experience with ENGAGE.
Read on to learn how they introduced ENGAGE, measured results, and ultimately grew the parish’s Adult Faith Formation program during the pandemic.
How has Word on Fire ENGAGE positively impacted your parish?
“Word on Fire ENGAGE has positively impacted our parish by seamlessly integrating the very effective Flocknote communication tool with the highly acclaimed video content available through Bishop Barron’s Word on Fire digital library, to easily deliver outstanding online programming to our parish community.
Our parish was already familiar with Flocknote, so the ENGAGE add-on was very easy to roll out. The ENGAGE platform availability was perfectly timed to allow us to continue to reach parishioners when most of our in-person faith formation programs had been suspended due to the pandemic.
We chose 3 different programs to simultaneously launch that were tailored toward different audiences and interests. We ran the “Catholicism” series for those interested in a more in-depth weekly study program, a weekly specialty series on The Mass and, a daily “Faith in Focus” series that provided brief video segments on important questions related to the Catholic faith. For the weekly study programs, we hosted weekly on-line discussion groups to help enhance learning and promote community ‘connectedness’ during the pandemic.
We had over 100 individuals sign up and enjoy the unique programming that we offered.“
Have you noticed a difference in your lukewarm parishioners since using ENGAGE?
“As Bishop Barron’s website is titled “Word on Fire”, need I say more? The Word on Fire content delivered via the ENGAGE platform is simply some of the most inspiring Catholic video content being produced today. Bishop Barron’s message is clear and his presentation style engaging. The cinematography used in the video backdrop for the majority of the programming is ‘National Geographic’ quality and simply captivating.
Those that participated in ENGAGE provided very positive feedback. Parishioners consistently shared that Bishop Barron made our Catholic faith ‘come alive’ for them. A true master of evangelization.“
What is some of the feedback you’ve heard from parishioners about ENGAGE?
“To gain feedback on the program we utilized two tools to measure our effectiveness. The first was to enable public comments through Flocknote so that individual input could be shared as the programs progressed. The program facilitator encouraged discussion/feedback in the weekly messages and also ‘led’ by adding his own personal reflections on each topic to initiate input. This approach encouraged interactive comments from the participants and also provided informal input on the level of engagement during the sessions.
In addition, at the end of each program series, a formal survey was developed to get participant feedback. The surveys were easy to design using the Flocknote survey tool. The summary results were easily accessible within Flocknote and was provided to parish staff and the adult faith formation team for evaluation.
The feedback was very positive. Bishop Barron’s amazing content received rave reviews.“
What problems has ENGAGE helped you solve, or gaps have you been able to fill at the parish?
“ENGAGE helped solve two gaps we were experiencing in our parish.
The first was to deliver faith enrichment to our parish community during the pandemic, when our regular in person programming was ‘shutdown’. Our parish had a very rich and well established in-person adult faith formation program up and running prior to the pandemic. When this came to an abrupt halt, ENGAGE provided the perfect opportunity to ‘fill-the-gap’ for continued faith enrichment in our parish community.
Secondly, we discovered that many individuals in our parish weren’t able to attend many of our in-person adult faith formation programs that are regularly offered due to direct conflicts with family or other commitments. The beauty of the ENGAGE is it can be viewed anytime and anywhere that is convenient for the individual. This opened up faith enrichment to families with young children, parents that have jobs that involve frequent out-of-town travel, and parishioners with transportation limitations.
ENGAGE was a great tool to increase access to a broader segment of our faith community!“
How is ENGAGE different than other tools you’ve tried in the past? What sets ENGAGE apart when comparing it to other programs?
“The unique difference with the ENGAGE versus other tools we have considered is that it seamlessly integrates a powerful communication tool, with dynamic Catholic educational content into a single application.
It is user-friendly, making it easy for non-IT professional staff to choose, schedule and launch effective faith enrichment programming effortlessly. Also it does not require you to ‘add’ and/or ‘keep-up-to-date’ a separate system with parish contact and registration information. It’s all integrated in one system you already use as your single source for parishioner contact information/data for your parish!“
If another parish was on the fence about making the investment in ENGAGE, what would you tell them?
“The investment in the ENGAGE platform allows you to leverage the Flocknote communication tool and turn it into an effective parish evangelization/catechesis delivery platform in a single application.
The platform allows you to harness the power of the internet and bring the message of the Gospel to your parishioners. High-quality content can be made available to your full parish community using the latest in smart phone/TV technology and delivered via text or email. It’s digital evangelization to your full parish community made easy!“
Flocknote has taught thousands of parishes how to directly reach their parishioners, and Word on Fire has inspired the faith of millions of Catholics around the world. Now, we’ve partnered to help you do the same.
With ENGAGE, you can send exclusive content from Word on Fire to your parishioners, and we’ll act as your guide along the way, helping you know what to send and when to send it.