Manhattan Church Concludes First Leg of Strategic Planning

Rebecca Doel In the Headlines

The report below is an update to the description of the strategic planning process that appeared in the Jan. 6, 2010, issue of HNP Today, detailing the background of the strategic plan development of the historic St. Francis of Assisi Church on West 31st Street.

NEW YORK — The first phase of the strategic planning process for St. Francis of Assisi Church here came to a close last month as the parish’s pastoral leadership team gathered for a three-day retreat in New Jersey.

According to the parish’s vision and planning document, “The very way the staff operates has changed completely. The process has brought the pastoral leadership team to a new level of collaboration and integration. … Not only are major decisions made collaboratively, but all of our ministries and areas of responsibility are now woven into an overall, intentional plan of ministry to meet the needs of the people we serve.”

Through a year of study and discussion, the team has identified three areas for growth and development, outlined in “Vision and Planning at St. Francis of Assisi”:
· Increasing outreach to young adults
· Growing outreach to gay and lesbian Catholics
· Developing more opportunities for parishioners to serve the poor and alienated in a direct way

Though each of these initiatives will be led by a member of the leadership team, the work expands “beyond the pastoral leadership team to include all directors at St. Francis of Assisi and the friars,” according to the July 4 parish bulletin, where pastor Jerome Massimino, OFM, wrote a summary of the strategic planning process.

PLT-rStephen Mimnaugh, OFM, will take charge of service and advocacy, which includes a possible day of service this fall. Pastoral associate Joseph Nuzzi will lead the young adult ministry with the goal to evangelize to Catholics in their 20s and 30s. Meredith Augustin, director of music ministries, will lead the development of a LGBT ministry (for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered people). Stephen provided information to worshippers through a piece in the July 18 parish bulletin.

In addition to Jerome, Stephen, Nuzzi and Augustin, members of the pastoral leadership team are Michael Carnevale, OFM, Fr. Joseph Cavoto, S.A., Vincent Laviano, OFM, Anthony LoGalbo, OFM, Timothy Shreenan, OFM, Alan Thomas, OFM, Edward Tochimczuk, and Kevin Tortorelli, OFM. They are pictured in a photo taken at last month’s retreat. It appeared in the parish bulletin, whose redesign is a result of leadership discussions, Jerome said.

“Because of the expertise and experience provided by consultant Peg Garvey-Mitchell as well as the openness and diligence of the pastoral leadership team and friars, a synergy was created that gave the process integrity and honesty,” said Timothy, in the parish bulletin’s article.

This fall, the pastoral leadership team will be asking for the help of parishioners in implementing the goals of the strategic plan, according to a letter from Jerome in the July 4 bulletin that appears on the parish website.

— Rebecca Doel is communications coordinator for Holy Name Province.