The five-year diocesan-wide strategy was overwhelmingly approved by Diocesan Synod on 16th March 2019. It builds on our vision: Confident Christians, Growing Churches, Transforming Communities, characterised by Loving, Living, Learning and enabled by Clergy and Lay Together, Purposeful Resourcing and Dynamic Partnerships.
Bishop of Leeds, the Rt Revd Nick Baines says:
I strongly endorse this document. Now it needs everyone in the diocese to grapple with it and
consider how to develop it in our own particular contexts, be it parish or deanery or Episcopal
Area. We must work at developing our praying, our giving, our loving and our reaching out to
those in our parishes. The strategy has been presented – the work now begins. I pray we
might do this with joy and courage.
The former Bishop of Kirkstall, the Rt Revd Paul Slater, encourages us:
Now is the time to take forward this strategy to realise our vision for the future, with clear
direction and priorities within a sustainable budget - confident that God has given us all that
we need to fulfil his purposes for his Church in this part of Yorkshire.
Our strategy is contained in the following documents: Maturing in Christ - the Strategy Document (which sets out our five strategic goals), Objectives and Initiatives, Toolkit and Strategy Summary document. These are all available here. The summary document can be printed out as a leaflet for congregations. The Toolkit, which is still in draft form, will be piloted across the Diocese. If you’d like to take part in the pilot, please contact Liz Morton, firstname.lastname@example.org (0113 353 0237). Following the pilot, there may still be some tweaks to the Toolkit, but the document as it stands can be used if you wish to make a start.
The five strategic goals, together with the measurable objectives, provide the guidance within which our work can be planned. These objectives are how the diocese will look and feel when the Strategy is implemented, in other words they are measurable attainments that can be accomplished by following certain steps. Steps to be taken at a diocesan-wide level are listed as practical initiatives, some of which you may also want to implement locally. Unlike the goals, which set our direction for the next five years, these objectives and initiatives may need to change as things change around us and as our diocese develops.
Other initiatives are already happening in parishes across our diocese. There will be more which clergy and laity will discover as they prayerfully discern how elements of the diocesan strategy might be woven into the vision and mission of the parish. It’s essential to note that these ongoing initiatives can form part of your work towards the strategic goals. As an example, the work you may have done through LYCiG is invaluable to the Strategy and how you plan the way forward.
It’s very important to say that no-one is expected to focus equally on all five goals: each parish, benefice or missional community is invited to identify where, in their specific context, the emphasis needs to be placed, and plan accordingly. Area Bishops and Archdeacons will be working with area deans and parishes across their Episcopal Areas on the roll out of the Strategy.
27th March 2019