Have you ever wondered how to gain support for your ministry from your parish community? Have you wondered if your efforts could be taken more seriously? Would you like to get more “buy-in” from everyone from the Pastor to your students? Then maybe you should try to transform your ministry with a mission statement!
The first thing to consider is who your stakeholders are. Stakeholders are everyone who has an interest in the success of your ministry. That would include students, parents, and other ministries within your parish. Yes, your pastor and staff share the same interest. Try making a list of everyone who wants you to succeed and then consider how much more support you may gain by being intentional and specific with your mission, vision, and goals.
A mission statement is a brief description of what an organization’s purpose is. Clear mission statements stop at describing what the ministry does, not how it is accomplished. Take a look at the following mission statement examples:
Our Mission is to provide public access to Federal Government records in our custody and control. Public access to government records strengthens democracy by allowing Americans to claim their rights of citizenship, hold their government accountable, and understand their history so they can participate more effectively in their government.
The mission of evangelization is entrusted by Christ to his Church to be carried out in all her forms of ministry, witness, and service. By evangelizing, the Church seeks to bring about in all Catholics such an enthusiasm for their faith that, in living their faith in Jesus and strengthened by the sacraments, most especially the celebration of the Eucharist, they freely share that faith with others to transform the world.
- To refresh the world…
- To inspire moments of optimism and happiness…
- To create value and make a difference.
Rooted in the Gospel of Jesus Christ, the National Catholic Educational Association (NCEA) is a professional membership organization that provides leadership, direction, and service to fulfill the evangelizing, catechizing, and teaching mission of the Church.
We, the faithful of the Archdiocese of Atlanta, are a people of prayer, love and joy who are dedicated to the salvation of all. As disciples and believers in our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, we proclaim the good news and grow in faith, hope, love, and service to others. We are unified in our commitment to sacramental life, pastoral care, and life-long formation in our Roman Catholic faith. We express our love through evangelization, fellowship, Catholic education, social services and charity in the full pursuit of effective discipleship.
St. Patrick Life Teen Program is a Eucharist-centered Catholic program for high school teens. By sharing the teachings of our Church and facilitating powerful encounters with Christ, we help teenagers grow in knowledge of our faith, while transforming their hearts to help them passionately live out the gospel by serving and loving one another. Through fellowship and open and honest discussion, we grow closer to one another and Christ, knowing that we walk this journey together.
These examples state the reason the organization (for the most part) exists. Clear mission statements stop at describing what the ministry does, not how it is accomplished.
Vision statements should describe how your organization does what the mission statement says it does. In other words, if an organization exists for a purpose, the vision statement should describe how the mission is accomplished.
Let’s look at St. Pat’s Life Teen as an example. It’s vision could be:
We accomplish our vision through 1) providing clear and faithful catechesis, 2) transforming encounters with Jesus, 3) opportunities and effective ways to be Christ to one another and 4) service opportunities within our community domestically and abroad.
SMART goals are specific goals that detail how the vision is accomplished. They must be:
Keeping our example of St. Pat’s, let’s say they determine SMART Goals for number one, providing clear and faithful catechesis.
Catechesis Goal #1
We will teach students about respecting life by teaching Article 5 from the Catechism and attend a local Pro-Life March on October 4.
Specific-teach Article 5 about Pro-Life
Measurable-attend a local Pro-Life March
Achievable-most will be able to attend
Time Sensitive-October 4
By detailing goals that support the Vision Statement, all goals have a high likelihood that they will be met.