The Visioning Process: An Update

We wanted to provide an update on the ongoing Visioning process at our church, which started in the Fall of 2016 and will continue this year with a series of visioning retreats this Fall and Winter. Since the visioning process began, the response to this process from our Rector, Clergy, Staff, and Vestry has been distinctly positive and enthusiastic, and although the process is not complete, it has already borne many good fruits, which are detailed below. The overall goal of the Visioning process is to help us articulate who the church of the Good Samaritan is and how we will use the gifts God has given us to further serve, worship and glorify Him in the years ahead. As we learned from The Armstrong Group during the April retreat, periodically taking stock of our church’s strengths, weakness, opportunities, and challenges and articulating our shared values and goals is an important exercise to ensure that as a congregation we are addressing the evolving needs of our parishioners, and reevaluating how best to use our resources and gifts for God’s glory. 
While the next retreat will not occur until next September, the process is already bearing fruit:
1. The Clergy and Staff organization has been updated by grouping teams with shared goals and ministries in order to improve our focus, collegiality and our ability to work constructively together. This reorganization will provide additional structure and support to preserve the qualities we value in the Church of the Good Samaritan.
2. We conducted a Staff Development Day in June. The goal of this event was to help staff identify strengths and weaknesses as individuals and as a team which will allow the staff to work more effectively together. 
3. Our Rector, Richard, began one-on-one coaching sessions with a principal at TAG. One of the outcomes of this coaching was the staff restructuring mentioned in #1 above.
4. A forthcoming Good Samaritan Planning and Objectives Document with significant detail from each ministry area in the church for the 2017/2018 year.  This document, available to the parish in mid-July 2017, has a strategic focus wherein the ministries have clearly defined purposes and goals. 

What is next? 
We are preparing for our next three visioning retreats: 
September 9, 2017: Discovering Good Sam’s “Code”
Preserving our core values as a foundation for the rest of the visioning process
•November 18, 2017: Clarifying Our Future Focus
What must we do differently and where must we excel in the next season at Good Sam 
December 9, 2017: Developing Our Strategic Priorities
Based on our strategic focus and core values

Over the next several months we will be providing more information regarding the retreats and inviting the congregation to meet with the Staff and Vestry to learn more about the process, ask questions, and provide input. During the Summer, look for tables in the atrium where you can talk and connect with the Staff and Vestry. In the fall, in conjunction with the planned visioning retreats, we will be hosting a series of forums to facilitate conversation within our congregation. 
And as always, we ask that you continue to pray. Please pray for the clergy, staff, vestry and your fellow parishioners that God would call all of us to be actively involved in building God’s church. God has begun a good work in us and will continue to do so through the Holy Spirit. We are offering this process to Him.