Cleansing Fire

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Webinar: Pastoral Planning As a Way of Being Church

January 28th, 2011, Promulgated by Mike

Dr. Bill Pickett, DOR’s Director of Pastoral Planning from the inception of the program in 1997 through his retirement in 2006, will be presenting a free webinar at 3:00 pm on Tuesday, February 8.

The webinar, which is entitled Pastoral Planning As a Way of Being Church, is being hosted by Ave Maria Press …

In partnership with the National Conference for Catechetical Leadership and the National Association for Lay Ministry, Ave Maria Press is pleased to present this free, live webinar with William Pickett, PhD!

Pastoral planning is more than a way of dealing with a set of practical problems faced by dioceses and parishes: imbalances between human, financial, and facility resources and the membership of faith communities. While these issues of growth or decline are important to the health of dioceses, pastoral planning must focus on ways to create and sustain vital faith communities, no matter the circumstances in which they exist. This webinar will focus on pastoral planning as a way of being Church rather than a set of tools and techniques for planning.

Ave Maria Press also has this to say about its presenter …

William L. Pickett served as the Director of Pastoral Planning for the Diocese of Rochester for nine years from 1997 to 2006. That role strengthened his spiritual life and led him to a deeper understanding of what it means to be a church. He has thirty years of experience in higher education administration and served as the president of St. John Fisher College in Rochester for ten years.

Pickett, who holds a Ph.D. in higher education from the University of Denver, is currently pursuing an M.A. in theological studies from St. Bernard’s School of Theology and Ministry. He remains an active presenter and consultant in the field of organizational planning with particular expertise in pastoral planning. Pickett lives in Rochester with his wife Marilyn. [A Concise Guide to Pastoral Planning] is his first book.

Those wishing to attend the webinar will need to sign up here.

On a personal note, I was intimately involved with DOR’s Pastoral Planning For the New Millennium (PPNM) program for several years and served as Steering Committee Chairman of the Eastern Greece/Charlotte (EG/C) Planning Group from 2000 through 2007.  While I witnessed many new and worthwhile areas of cooperation among parishes during that time – both in EG/C and other planning groups – I cannot say that I ever once saw PPNM “create and sustain” a “vital faith community.”  Yes, I saw parishes merged and church buildings closed at the end of long, arduous processes but, in my experience, to term what arose from those ashes “vital faith communities” is to raise happy talk to a whole new level.  Just take a look at the recent fiasco in Irondequoit if you need an example.

When it comes time to close parishes Pastoral Planning has frequently led to unnecessarily hurt feelings, charges of backroom dealing and substantial numbers of Catholics leaving the faith.  That’s a way of “being Church” that only Satan could appreciate.

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4 Responses to “Webinar: Pastoral Planning As a Way of Being Church”

  1. avatar Dr. K says:

    “Led him to a deeper understanding of what it means to be a church.”

    http://billpickett.blogspot.com/2011/01/transformation-church.html

    I think the link above disproves this claim.

    Also, has anyone else noticed the growing relationship between Ave Maria press and our DoR personalities? Bishop Clark’s Forward in Hope, at least three Fr. Kevin McKenna books, and Dr. Picket’s book have all been published by this company. I would think any reputable Catholic publisher would avoid publishing books by those who have done much to hurt the Catholic faith here in Rochester.

  2. avatar snowshoes says:

    Kermit says, “Well, let’s look on the bright side, for anyone needing such, it might prove an effective emetic!” St. Thomas Aquinas, please help us learn how to use the verb “to be”!?!

  3. avatar Monk says:

    Mike, You are so right! Thanks for shining the light of truth on the disaster that the DoR’s pastoral planning has done to the faith in our communities.

  4. avatar Scott says:

    This guy was a joke at St. John Fisher destroying that institution and of course he becomes our Pastoral Planner under our Bishop. Destroyers seem to be the modus operandi in this diocese!

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