A Pastoral Letter from
Bishop Laish Boyd

Dear Sisters and Brothers,

Happy Eastertide to you and your families.

Our beloved Diocese is embarking upon a special project which will help us tremendously. We are setting out to put together a Strategic Development Plan (SDP).

The 114th session of Diocesan Synod met in February 2017 and passed a resolution approving the appointment of a Diocesan Strategic Planning Committee/Commission (DSPC) with a mandate to develop said plan. Said Commission was charged to do so addressing “specific issues such as membership retention, membership growth, attracting young adults (ages 20-45) and promoting more effectively the major tenets of Anglicanism and their relevance to contemporary society, among other things.”

A Strategic Development Plan is a process in which the whole Diocese shares. It begins with a wide-ranging discussion that asks each Anglican some questions: “What is your vision for your church?” and “Where do you want your church to be and where do you want your Church to go in the future?” and “What steps are necessary for us to get there?”

A Strategic Development Plan is a discussion which leads to the production of a document that sets out specific strategies and action plans to enable the Diocese to become a more dynamic and responsive Church:
  1. that will proclaim the gospel better;
  2. that meets the needs of our parishioners better, and
  3. that responds to the wider society better.
The Plan is to be realized over the next 10 years.

The Diocesan Strategic Planning Commission (DSPC) has been formed. An attempt has been made to put together a diverse groups of persons in terms of gender, background, skill set, age and outlook.

Other persons will also be involved in various ways and the various degrees as the process unfolds.

The Diocesan Strategic Planning Commission is being supported by a Project Management Team (PMT) made up of persons with project management technical skills to execute the exercise.

The Strategic Development Planning exercise has two phases:

The first phase involves wide consultation across the Diocese with as many groupings as possible. This phase has already began.

The Project Management Team made a presentation to the Clergy Conference in May 2017, and met with the clergy in each of the four archdeaconries (the Archdeaconry Chapters) in archdeaconry groupings. Next there will be meetings with Grand Bahama and New Providence Vestries. The consultation will continue with the DSPC meeting with parishes and many ministry groupings across the Diocese. The purpose of all of these meetings is to discuss key strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats facing the Anglican Church (the SWOT process).

The second phase involves the compiling of all responses to submit an initial report to the DSPC. The Commission will draft an Initial Plan, while continuing to seek feedback from the parishes.

Each successive draft of the Plan will be shared and discussed at the parish level.

Ultimately, the completed plan will be presented to Diocesan Council and then to Diocesan Synod.

The beauty of the Strategic plan is the wide and inclusive discussion all across the Diocese, allowing Anglicans of all points of view and from all walks of life to dialogue and to share their views AND to shape the Church of the future. The success of this endeavor depends on honest and open discourse as we discuss the direction of the Diocese. I ask you to pray for this process and to participate fully at the ministry and parish levels.

Yours in Christ

The Rt. Rev'd. Laish Z. Boyd Sr.