Appendix V – Example of Anonymous Parish Survey

Anonymous survey of (name of Parish) parishioners re: Long Range and Shorter Range (Strategic) Planning

This survey is being conducted by our parish as a critical part of a more comprehensive planning process for our parish. We need everyone either registered or even occasionally participating in any parish activities, including attending mass, to participate. One survey per person.

Demographic Profile Data:

  1. Gender
▢ Male3▢ Female▢ Other
  • Age group
▢ Under 13▢ 20-39▢ 40-59▢ 60 and over
  • Family Status
▢ Married w/children at home▢ Married w/o children at home
▢ Single w/children at home▢ Single w/o children at home
  • Registered in Parish
▢ Yes▢ No
  • Catholic Status
▢ Baptized life long (cradle) Catholic▢ Converted to Catholicism
▢ Non catholic, but Christian▢ Non catholic-other
  • Level of participation (check as many as appropriate)-
▢ Regularly attend daily mass▢ Regularly attend Weekend mass
▢ Active member of one or more of many parish ministries▢ Attend parish school
  • Live approximately this many miles from church-
▢ Under 1 mile▢ 2 to 5 miles▢ Over 5 miles

Planning issues:

  • Extent you agree or disagree with following proposed mission statement for our parish provided by the late Chicago Cardinal George:

“(name of parish) exists to help people ‘Follow in the Footsteps of Jesus Christ by praying, evangelizing and helping others’.”

Disagree Agree

Comment, if any 




  • How important are each of three things that we need to do to fulfill our mission of following in Jesus’ footsteps?
    Score (0=not important to 5=very important)
  1. ______Evangelizing
  2. ______Praying
  3. ______Helping others
  1. How we can do a better job of evangelizing?
    Score (0=not important to 5=very important)
  2. _______Promote several ways of showing publicly a better example of being a Catholic.
  3. _______Encourage parishioners to assert Catholicism more in appropriate public and private settings.
  4. _______Use more banners, bumper stickers, wrist bands, hats, tee shirts, etc.
  5. _______Run ads in newspapers and social media.
  6. _______Conduct workshops in parish on how to evangelize.
  7. ________Broadcast one or more weekend mass on TV
  8. ________Form “Catholics at Work” groups of teens and adults that will clean debris from streets and public areas and will pair with same type groups from other parishes in neighborhood being cleaned.
  9. _______Form “Catholics in Action” groups that author and distribute widely articles/papers explaining Catholic position on many issues.
  10. _______Encourage everyone to write letters to editors
  11. _______Form teen and young adult teams to knock on neighbors doors to                                                         distribute literature and explain Catholicism when possible.
  12. _______Supporting Catholic candidates for public office.
  13. ________Form active welcoming committee for all church services.
  14. ______Publicize and make it well known that our parish welcomes all.
  15. _______Use more emails, social networking (Facebook, Twitter, etc.), and televising masses to reach the maximum number of people possible.
  16. _______Other,

Please explain__________________________________________________________



11. How we can do a better job of praying?
Score (0=not important to 5=very important)

  1. _______Have 24/7 hourly adoration.
  2. _______Have 6 am to 6 pm hourly adoration.
  3. _______Have more rosary services in church.
  4. _______Have more Benediction services.
  5. _______Form prayer groups of say 10 families and rotate prayer/rosary sessions at members houses.
  6. ________Develop and distribute bibliography on praying.
  7. _______Have more homilies on praying.
  8. _______Hold meetings of small groups to discuss ways to pray more.
  9. ________Have shorter masses.
  10. ______Invite life story homilies from celebrities once a month or so.
  11. ______Have full orchestra and choir at main weekend mass.
  12. ______Invite celebrity soloists to sing with choir and orchestra.
  13. ______Make certain parish bookstore has printed material on prayer.
  14. _______Make  more use of audio-visual aids and art forms in masses.
  15. _______Use more emails, social networking (Facebook, Twitter, etc.), and televising masses to reach the maximum number of people possible.
  16. _______Other.

Please explain___________________________________________________________



12. How can we do a better job of helping others?
Score (0=no help to 5=very important)

  1. ________Take inventory of all parishioners to find all areas of expertise and ability to help others. No competition to for profit businesses.
  2. ________Establish anonymous Hot Line for all people (parishioners or not) living within, say 5 miles or so, to call for free help. This would include a whole range of services such as consumer counseling, dispute resolution, financial advice, handyman, legal advice, marriage counseling, sexuality issues, spiritual advice, substance abuse, transportation, tutoring, etc.
  3. ________Establish group to take communion to everyone who cannot attend church.
  4. ________Establish group that visits the sick or shut-ins whether at home, hospitals, nursing homes.
  5. ________Establish baby sitting service.
  6. ________Maintain parish wide prayer list for people who have contacted parish or are recommended by friends, etc.
  7. ________Maintain list of people who would just like to have someone come visit them every so often. Establish group to serve.
  8. ________Make more use of internet and social networking to publicize the availability of how we can help.
  9. ________Other

      Please explain_________________________________________________________



13. What do you believe are the main reasons why many Catholics do not practice their religion regularly? Score (0=none thru 5=mainly).        

  1. ________Weekend masses are too long.
  2. ________Have other more important things to do.
  3. ________Mass is boring.
  4. ________None of my friends attend church.
  5. ________My family does not go so why should I.
  6. ________ Were not taught much about Catholicism at home.
  7. ________Were not taught much about Catholicism in school.
  8. ________Religion is just not that important to me.
  9. ________Not necessary to go to church to be saved.
  10. ________Not necessary to belong to an organized religion to be saved.
  11. ________Do not agree with some of Church’s principal teachings.
  12. ________Angry with how clerical sexual scandals were handled by church.
  13. ________Angry with inconsistencies in church positions on political issues.
  14. ________Failure of church to sanction elected Catholic public officials who vote for and/or publicly speak out against church teachings on abortion, etc.
  15. ________Other.

    Please explain.______________________________________________________


14. Which of the Church’s principal teachings, if any, do you take issue


        Score (0=no issue thru 5=strong issue).

  1. ________Human life begins at conception, thus all abortions are wrong.
  2. ________Only natural birth control is permitted.
  3. ________Women cannot be priests.
  4. ________Assisted suicide is wrong.
  5. ________On matters of faith, the Pope is infallible.
  6. ________ Capital punishment is wrong.
  7. ________Homosexuals are welcome, but homosexual behavior is wrong.
  8. ________Marriage between two people of the same sex is wrong.
  9. ________Celibacy is required and thus marriage by clergy is prohibited.
  10. _________Other.

    Please explain._____________________________________________________



15. Other comments (use reverse side if needed)