The diocesan strategic plan was initiated in order to develop a culture of forward-thinking and strategic planning that can build on the deepest desires of the people; to forge a vision and plan that can help make these dreams come true; and to identify the pitfalls within the Diocese and provide solutions to remedy them.
In order to successfully implement the vision, the first thing we did was consult with every priest within the Diocese to ask them what their concerns were. Based on the issues and concerns identified by the priests, we then conducted Listening Sessions throughout the Diocese to ask the people in the pews what their concerns were. This helped to solidify and confirm the topics and issues identified by the priests.
Strategic Planning Commissions were organized to collectively work toward this new vision for the Diocese of Houma-Thibodaux. The commissions’ research and recommendations will be comprehensive and provide future direction for all aspects of diocesan life, including our parishes, schools, Catholic Charities and the many other ministries that bear witness to the Diocese’s life-changing work.
The work of the commissions is a two-phased approach. During phase one, each planning commission will commit to study the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats of its identified area of the Church. They will research best practice models, seek the advice and counsel of experts, and evaluate all resources. The commission members will meet in general session on 3-4 occasions and conduct much of their work in scheduled sub-committee meetings, after which they will make recommendations to the priests for their review during the Convocation in August. Based on the recommendations which the priests may ratify, the commissions will then move into phase two, during which time they will take the recommendations from the priests and map out goals and strategies by which to accomplish these objectives. The goals and objectives will be presented to the priests again for their approval in Winter 2017.
Each commission consists of approximately 40-60 lay people and priests that are gathered to discuss a particular area of the Church (e.g. parish life, youth formation, Catholic schools, etc.)
As mentioned above, the commission members meet together about 3 times over a couple months.
Each commission is served by a leadership team. This team includes a facilitor that guides the discussion, allowing commission members to contribute their thoughts and expertise on the topic.
The commssions are asked to do some research on best practices and identify structures, processes, parishes, dioceses, etc. which are striving in the Catholic Church in other areas of the country.
We have worked to create a culture of Strategic Planning which involves listening, discerning, planning, and implementing.
To learn more about individual commissions and how to get involved, visit our Commissions Page.