To each individual the manifestation of the Spirit is given for some benefit. To one is given through the Spirit the expression of wisdom; to another the expression of knowledge according to the same Spirit; to another faith by the same Spirit; to another gifts of healing by the one Spirit; to another mighty deeds; to another prophecy; to another discernment of spirits; to another varieties of tongues; to another interpretation of tongues. But one and the same Spirit produces all of these, distributing them individually to each person as he wishes. As a body is one though it has many parts, and all the parts of the body, though many, are one body, so also Christ. For in one Spirit we were all baptized into one body, whether Jews or Greeks, slaves or free persons, and we were all given to drink of one Spirit. Now the body is not a single part, but many.
The interdependence of the members of the Body of Christ and the communion to which we are called require that relationships be built on mutual trust. The dictionary defines trust as assured reliance on the character, ability, strength or truth of someone or something and, secondly, one in whom confidence is placed. Mutual trust is an essential element of parish life.
Defining trust is easy, establishing trust within a group takes time and commitment. Trust within a working group requires that individuals be both trusting and trustworthy. Once trust is established in a group, it is important that the members behave in ways that will maintain and increase it.
The trust level within working groups is not a stable element, it will vary and change. Each interaction increases or decreases the level within the group. As members take risks to ask sincere questions and these questions are received with openness and acceptance, the level of trust within the group rises.
The higher the level of trust among members the more effectively they can work together. When members of a group believe that the shared goal is more important to everyone involved than individual goals, the level of trust increases, the quality of their interaction is improved and the probability of achieving goals is raised.
Some Ways to Increase the Level of Trust in Your Parish Group
- Agree to confidentiality: what is said in the meeting stays in the meeting
- Practice empathetic listening: listen not just to the word but to their meaning for the person speaking them
- Critique ideas, not individuals
- Appreciate the perspective of others
- Assist others to listen
- Be willing to take risks and support others who do the same