"[Ottawa] has a history of pastors meeting together to build relationships and pray, but they found the Church in Ottawa still has a lot of work to do when it comes to partnerships in outreach," says Kerry Kronberg, associate director of Love Ottawa. "There was a desire to partner and serve our city together, but it didn't happen the ways that were hoped for."
"There is a motivation that happens as people share their observations, so I expect to see a mobilization of the Church."
Throughout August Kronberg's team is preparing a report highlighting Vanier's strengths, weaknesses and recommending strategic partnerships to facilitate outreach and community work. At the end of the summer the report will be presented to local pastors, politicians and community leaders.
Doug Stringer, interim pastor at Vanier Community Church, believes the results will indicate if local churches are investing in the right areas and help them coordinate programs that compliment each other.
"It brings an informed jumping in," he says. "It helps to know demographics, to understand who this community really is."
Kronberg says they are already seeing "conversations and a cross-polonization of ideas" among Vanier Christians. Believers from various congregations have responded by holding joint prayer walks throughout Vanier.
"My hope is that [the study and partnerships] will remove the blinders of opportunities or needs that we are not aware of," says Stefan Cherry, pastor of The Village International Mennonite Church.
Kronberg believes this work is more than just strategic planning, it's all about love.
"When Christians take time to actually know their neighbours, it's an indication of true concern. If we actually love someone we take the time to get to know them."