The saying “strength in numbers” can be applied to many things. Dogs travel in packs on account of the fact that a group of animals is capable of protecting themselves and each other far more effectively than they might if they travel through the world as individuals. In the same way, challenging the closure of your parish and/or church will be far easier if you do not approach the situation alone. You should work to build a group of like-minded individuals who are prepared to both come together to challenge the closure of your parish and/or church, but who are also prepared to work to ensure that any victory you achieve, either in terms of saving the church or the parish, enjoys the support necessary to be sustainable over time. Thus, when choosing between 4 and 8 other individuals to help you challenge your church’s closure as the center of a group set up for this specific purpose, you want to pick people who are not only motivated to fight what they see as an injustice, i.e. the closure of your parish and/or church, but those who are also committed to doing whatever it takes in the long-run to ensuring that your church remains a Catholic sacred space. You should ensure that this commitment is at the center of your work to save your parish and/or church from closure, and carefully discuss the situation with each of those you seek to recruit to help you, to ensure that it is at the center of their dedication to the cause as well. I have seen too many cases of individuals establishing groups dedicated to fighting the closure of a parish, who manage to save the church itself but not the parish, only to eventually finally lose the church as well because they did not have a plan for its continued retention as a Roman Catholic sacred space. Such an outcome is completely avoidable, but it takes planning at the outset on the part of those who want to stop a closure from occurring.

     The 4 to 8 individuals you select to help you challenge a closure will serve as the steering committee of your efforts. If you are reading this article, it is obvious that you are passionate enough about saving your parish and/or church that you are taking the time to become familiar with the most important information associated with this situation. It is likely not the case that each and every one of your fellow parishioners has had the time necessary to do the same, or that even if they have the time to do so, that they will be as aware as you will be when you finish this article of the different things which must be taken into consideration when challenging a closure. Thus, it is not a good idea for you to allow for the members of your steering committee to be elected. Electing the members of a steering committee will leave it subject to the risk of being dominated by those who have little or no idea of how best to contest the situation your parish and/or church faces, and thus they will be unable to effectively stop the closure from happening. It is also possible that individuals who are at the forefront of efforts to stop the closure of a parish and/or church and who do not have sufficient information about how to best accomplish this task may cause irreparable damage to these efforts. Thus, you need to carefully interview each of those you wish to have stand with you to help you save your parish and/or church, in order to be sure they are committed to this task and the work that may be needed afterwards, and also that they are able to understand and are committed to learn about the material contained within this article. In this way you can assemble a well-functioning steering committee that can oversee the major tasks associated with saving your parish and/or church from closure.