Some “behind the scenes planning” for IHM Parish!
I put together in 2011 and 2012 a five-year plan, gleaning from comments many of you made who attended a town hall meeting in August of 2011. The Parish Pastoral Council and I listened to many of you speak about the past and the present of IHM Parish and then you expressed what you thought the future for IHM could be. From those many comments was produced a plan called: Y.E.S. G.O.D. The letters standing for: Youth, Education, Spiritual life, Growth, Outreach, and Development. This gave me YOUR direction for our parish life. This plan was what you desired and wanted me to bring about.
From this “plan” many opportunities began to take place here at IHM for us: Life Teen, XLT, Christ Life, a Specially Gifted program, Women of Faith, Theology of the Body, Men’s Night, Women’s Night, Book studies, Poustinia for Women, Bible Studies, Summer Learning Nights, Wild Goose Sisters, Bereavement Ministry, Card Ministry, Men’s Fellowship, Parish Service Day, and Peter’s Shadow Healing Ministry.
All these are wonderful activities, but, I believe it is time once again to activate our minds and hearts and prayerfully discern the next several years for parish life and what more could we do to fulfill our mission. I am interested in hearing where you as a parishioner would like to grow and become a better church member. Doing something like strategic planning helps me lead us in that pathway.
Strategic planning would be good for the parish because strategic planning is an important part of the creation, development, and growth of any organization. If our mission is to LOVE GOD, MAKE DISCIPLES, THROUGH MARY, I want our parish to spiritually grow and to welcome MORE DISCIPLES! I want our parishioners to find more value in a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. Church planning helps map out the strategic steps needed to achieve that mission of LOVING GOD, MAKING DISCIPLES, THROUGH MARY!
So, in order to grow and develop spiritual lives, what first needs to be done is to look back on the years of the five-year plan and identify our strengths in the past six years, what our weaknesses have been, what opportunities we took, and what threatens us from growing. They call this an S.W.O.T analysis.
I will keep you informed about this very first step.