Stages of Community development-Chart

Like any other human group, a religious community goes through different stages of development from its inception to termination. This process is evident if we observe the three year term of service common in many Claretian communities. Each time there is a transfer the community is re-born and the dynamics of dependence, independence and interdepence begin to unfold. The stages  of group development are presented here in eight identificable stages. It is also possible that a community may remain arrested at one stage or regress to an earlier stage or progress ahead towards pooling energy to fulfill the mission of the community. 

Stages of Community Development

 

Stages

 

Expressed Feeling or Behavior

 

Predominant Need

 

Function of Leader

 

Tasks of Leader

 

1.orientation

 

Anxiety, fear or insecurity

Safety and security

Create a climate where people feel safe and secure

Clarify expectations

 

2.In/Out

 

Fight, flight or neurotic behavior

 

Belonging

 

Help those alienated to experience a sense of belonging

Encourage those who feel alienated discuss their perception

 

 

3.Up/Down

 

Competitiveness

 

Esteem

Initiate a process that fosters personal value esteem

Utilize a gift discernment process

 

 

4.Conflict

 

Avoidance and denial

Safety and esteem

Encourage the community to deal with the conflict

Model a willingness to deal with conflict

 

 

5.Cohesion

 

Peace and trust, tendency to nest

 

Belonging

 

Call the group to its mission

Challenge the community to focus beyond itself

 

 

6.Faith-Sharing

 

Ambivalence

Safety and esteem

Invite the community to engage in faith-sharing

 

 

Model faith-sharing

 

7.Near/Far

 

Struggle to find a comfort level

 

Love or affinity

Aid the community to clarify expectations of intimacy

Invite members to discuss expectations of intimacy

 

 

8.Termination

 

Sadness and anger

 

Safety

Help community process the experience of loss

Assist the community with the process of grieving

 

This chart is adapted from Loughlan Sofield, Rosine Hammet and Carroll Juliano, in Building community (1998). You will fine more details on the stages and its characteristics in the works of these authors.

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