Bill Nordenbrock

Appreciative Inquiry in the Praxis of Reconciliation

The Catholic Theological Union at Chicago
May 2008

This project explored the effectiveness of an Appreciative Inquiry process to effect reconciliation and to restore communion in an ecclesial setting. The thesis was tested in St. Agatha Catholic Church, a church where a pastor had been removed for sexual misconduct. Following an overview of the theory and practice of Appreciative Inquiry, the narrative of the process at St. Agatha is presented. A theology of reconciliation and communion ecclesiology are explored and then used as lenses to reflect on the experience at St. Agatha. In conclusion, the possible location of Appreciative Inquiry in a praxis of reconciliation is presented.