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Healthy Parish Benchmarks

Resource Focused Benchmarks for Parishes

The Healthy Parish Benchmarks serve as a guide to assist the pastor proactively in the administration of the parish by providing best practice benchmarks to review annually. 

The benchmarks are to be used as a self-assessment tool for pastors and their parish leadership to assess and monitor the overall health of the parish. Together with the financial reviews, the benchmarks will also be used by the Bishop of Honolulu, the diocesan offices, and the College of Consultors to annually assess the health of each parish and to propose the most effective and timely solutions for parishes in need assistance. 

To view and download the healthy parish benchmarks, please click here.

Background & History

In 2018, Bishop Larry Silva formed a task force composed of members of the Presbyteral Council and lay representatives to address the serious issue of parishes that struggle financially. The task force identified several factors that can cause a parish to experience decline, such as changing demographics, poor management, leadership issues, and lack of efforts to promote stewardship. To promote strong and vibrant parishes across the diocese, the task force developed ten resource focused benchmarks of healthy parishes. The task force also identified the characteristics of healthy parishes.

Characteristics of a Healthy Parish

Healthy Parishes have at a minimum the following characteristics.

  • There is active communication and engagement of clergy with parishioners and staff resulting in the participation of the entire faith community in the life of the parish.
  • There is regular and ongoing leadership formation of clergy and laity essential for a vibrant faith community.
  • People, facilities, and funds are effectively managed in support of the parish vision as articulated and communicated by the parish pastoral council.
  • Parishes are able to meet their financial obligations and commitments without regular infusions from the diocese.
  • Parishes are actively engaged with the larger civic community consistent with Catholic social teachings. If the parish did not exist the parish's absence would impact, be felt, and be missed by the community within which it is located.

The Benchmarks

The benchmarks address ten areas of temporal management:

  1. Pastoral Council
  2. Parish Financial Council
  3. Parish Stewardship Effort
  4. Competent Lay Employee Compensation
  5. Repair, Maintenance, and Renovation
  6. Schools
  7. Parish Budget
  8. Reporting of Parish Financial Condition
  9. Bills Are Paid When Due
  10. Sunday Giving

To learn more about the benchmarks, please download our Healthy Parish Benchmarks brochure here.