Beware the "Listening Process," as proposed in a resolution to the West Virginia Diocesan Convention (resolution 2)
“A facilitated listening process using tools such as Appreciative Inquiry would afford us, as a diocese, an opportunity to listen to one another in a meaningful way, learn from one another and hold one another in respect and with love as brothers and sisters in Christ even as we explore our differing beliefs which we hold across a continuum concerning..."(you know what)
And what is Appreciative Inquiry? Here is a description from AI commons,
“Appreciative Inquiry is about the coevolutionary search for the best in people, their organizations, and the relevant world around them. In its broadest focus, it involves systematic discovery of what gives ‘life’ to a living system when it is most alive, most effective, and most constructively capable in economic, ecological, and human terms. AI involves, in a central way, the art and practice of asking questions that strengthen a system’s capacity to apprehend, anticipate, and heighten positive potential. It centrally involves the mobilization of inquiry through the crafting of the “unconditional positive question” often-involving hundreds or sometimes thousands of people. In AI the arduous task of intervention gives way to the speed of imagination and innovation; instead of negation, criticism, and spiraling diagnosis, there is discovery, dream, and design. AI seeks, fundamentally, to build a constructive union between a whole people and the massive entirety of what people talk about as past and present capacities: achievements, assets, unexplored potentials, innovations, strengths, elevated thoughts, opportunities, benchmarks, high point moments, lived values, traditions, strategic competencies, stories, expressions of wisdom, insights into the deeper corporate spirit or soul-- and visions of valued and possible futures. Taking all of these together as a gestalt, AI deliberately, in everything it does, seeks to work from accounts of this “positive change core”—and it assumes that every living system has many untapped and rich and inspiring accounts of the positive. Link the energy of this core directly to any change agenda and changes never thought possible are suddenly and democratically mobilized.”
A.I. = Absent Intelligence
Linking A.I. to a change agenda might give you exactly the change you hope for.
If you have an agenda, you are not really listening.
And I always thought inquiring minds would appreciate the opportunity for a little "negation, criticism, and spiraling diagnosis."