205 No. Fourth Street | Baton Rouge, Louisiana 70801 | 225-387-5141 | church @ stjamesbr.org |                

Strategic Plan - Final!


Dear Friends:

During the strategic planning process, the need for better communications from the vestry to our parishioners became obvious to us. 

Therefore, we have committed to insure the vestry minutes will be available to you following each vestry meeting. The report of the August 10 meeting is available here. The final, approved version of the Strategic Plan, is available here

In the future, a link to the minutes will be included in the Friday eMessenger following the monthly vestry meeting. 

We hope you will find this communications effort of interest and value to you. And, as always, we ask you to contact either Mark+, Lee or any vestry member should you have ideas to pass along and/or questions about vestry issues.

Yours in Christ,

Lee Griffin
Senior Warden

The Very Rev. J. Mark Holland






Update on Strategic Planning Process


Dear St. James Parishioners,

The planning process at St. James continues. Following the Town Hall meetings, where we received valuable input from the attendees, additional work has been done to provide more detail to a plan that will be submitted to the vestry for approval and implementation. This more-detailed plan will first be submitted to the April workshop participants: the vestry, members of the Strategic Planning Committee, the task force chairs, and the clergy. Once the workshop participants review and provide further input, the resulting plan will be distributed to the entire parish.

At its August meeting, the vestry will consider the establishment of a standing committee charged with the responsibility of implementing the vestry-approved strategic plan. We understand that we can not predict the future. Accordingly, the plan will be fluid and will take into consideration conditions that may come into existence over time.

Thank you for your continued interest in the future of St. James Episcopal Church. We will keep you informed as progress is made and ask that you always feel free to give us your thoughts and ideas.

Lee Griffin
Senior Warden

The Very Rev. J. Mark Holland






Town Hall Meeting Reports


Dear St. James Parishioners,

The attendance at the two Town Hall meetings on May 17 and 20 exceeded all expectations -- over 300 parishioners attended! The product of the April Planning Workshop attended by the Strategic Planning Committee members, the Task Force chairs and the Clergy was shared. A mission statement, a set of Core Values, Vision Statements, and a draft plan were discussed. Breakout table discussions followed to review the above and to answer four questions. We received valuable input from all of you at these meetings and want to make that information available to the parish. A summary version of your input is available here and you can access the full reports of each table here.

Our planning process has reached what I refer to as "the end of the beginning." Much work remains to be done as we finalize the strategic plan and then move into the implementation phase. Volunteer opportunities will be plentiful and your suggestions/ideas will be sought and respected. We commit to keeping you informed and asking for your input each step of the way.

Thank you for your participation and particularly your love of our Lord and St. James Episcopal Church. We ask for your continued prayers.

Lee Griffin
Senior Warden




Strategic Planning Workshop & Town Meetings


By Lolly Martin

A Planning Workshop was held April 17 and 18 at St. James Episcopal Church. Hosted by the Strategic Planning Committee, the workshop was attended by 35 members of the vestry, clergy, and Task Force leaders. Our consultant, Reb Scarborough, facilitated the two-day session of prayer, fellowship, discussion, and decisions. Our workshop objective was to create a foundational vision document and expand that to a draft strategic plan with clear goals and specific objectives, using the survey responses from parishioners as our guide.

We began Friday with opening remarks from Senior Warden Lee Griffin and our rector, Fr. Mark Holland; both church leaders renewed their commitment to leading St. James toward building unity in our congregation and moving toward a vibrant future at St. James. As a group, we then reviewed key findings of the survey and listened to reports of the eight task force leaders; each report is linked, here: Day School, Financial, Real Estate, Maintenance, Youth, Adult Christian Formation, Millennials, and Community Ministry. We closed the first day with a draft vision document including Mission, Core Values and Vision Statements for St. James over the next five years.

On Saturday, we refined and validated Friday’s work. We then moved into building out a strategic plan for St. James based on the vision document and, working in small groups, we defined specific goals and objectives. Our results are now in the hands of our consultant who will consolidate the two-day efforts into a strategic plan draft.

The draft plan will be shared with all of you at Town Hall meetings on May 17 and May 20, 2015 where we will seek your input on the plan. This is your opportunity to review, revise, and accept this plan.

Please plan to attend one of these important events! Along with a fried chicken dinner, nursery will be provided for 0-4. Movies/babysitter will be available in the youth suite for ages 5-12.

Please make a reservation for dinner and/or child care at the Town Hall meetings, here.



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St. James Episcopal Church
Baton Rouge, Louisiana USA