2020 Clarity of Vision
20/20 vision is a term used to express normal visual acuity, the clarity of vision measured at twenty feet. It does not necessarily mean perfect vision. It indicates the clarity of vision at a distance, which is considered typical and reasonable for a person to “see.” As the United States Association of the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd (CGSUSA) looks to our future with hope, we seek to articulate a clarity of vision that is regular and reasonable for our association and those interested in the religious life of children – a clarity of vision that helps us to “see” how our mission and purpose actively impact the world in which we live and the children and adults we serve.
We are at a moment in our history where we must discern a sustainable future for our association that is clear, compelling, and inclusive. It needs to be clear enough to see what is in our immediate vision and compelling enough to be meaningful to those who hear it. It needs to be inclusive enough that those who hear will then help to make it happen and believe they can play an important part in moving forward. As we addressed the practicalities of being a national nonprofit corporation, we held to our guiding principles. This is a very delicate line to walk yet one we are capable of walking with the wisdom and knowledge that comes from the Holy Spirit. We must find ways to become more financially sustainable and stable. We trust that it is in God’s plan that we do so.
In this 2020 Vision – A Purposeful Plan, we offer clarity of vision that is regular and reasonable for our association – a clarity of vision that helps us to “see” how our mission and purpose actively impacting the world in which we live and the children and adults we serve. This purposeful plan anticipates the inevitability of change, focuses on CGSUSA’s mission, and is realistic, comprehensive, and integrated across all the Association’s functions.
Our vision is to sustain and advance the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd legacy by:
- Making the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd and the writings of Sofia Cavalletti and Gianna Gobbi accessible to all.
- Recognizing the need for clear and available communications using written, voice and visual electronic media to maintain contact with catechists and others.
- Providing formation in accord with the work of Sofia Cavalletti and Gianna Gobbi, through the provision of a discernment process and training for formation leaders, offering regular retreats and conferences and the use of approved Formation Leader Handbooks.
- Holding courses in the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd in colleges, universities and seminaries across the United States.
- Supporting the work of the International Council and working in harmony with it.
- Translating and distributing materials changes and new materials as recommended by the International Council to formation leaders and catechists through the United States Association.
- Providing a manual at each level with accurate and most excellent plans and schematics for constructing atrium materials.
- Encouraging regional groups in every part of the nation.
- Establishing and maintaining links with diocese and denominations represented by the membership and other formation and educational groups.
- Providing help and resources to assist catechists in adapting this work to the liturgy of their denominations.
- Establishing and maintaining historical archives of the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd, making them accessible to members.
- Ensuring proper governance of the United States Association of the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd.
- Sustaining and advancing the legacy in a financially sustainable way.
After a period of still, silent observation, we began a two-year development process.
- The development of this Five-year Purposeful Plan spanned two full years and involved the CGSUSA Board of Directors and Committee Members, the Staff, Formation Leaders, Catechists, and Regional Groups in meetings and listening sessions.
- The CGSUSA Board of Trustees established purposeful priorities, the result of careful consultation and deliberation, during the work of the 2016 Sustainability Plan, at which time these overarching goals were shared with the membership of CGS during the annual meeting of that year.
- Throughout 2017, we held listening sessions with catechists and members around the country. We invited comments and feedback from the nation to the CGSUSA Board to ensure that the approaches undertaken by CGSUSA were consistent with the broader vision of CGSUSA and the International Council.
- We formed working groups – consisting of board members, committee members, community members, and staff – to provide clear plans in support of each priority. Once we agreed upon each approach, we set specific objectives, each with a complement of action items, responsible parties and due dates to bring that objective to fruitful conclusion.
- In April, May, and June of 2019, the Purposeful Plan Steering Committee, Board of Trustees, staff and working groups met collectively to create the collaborative action items associated with the objectives.
- During July of 2019, final rounds of reviews and revision to this draft took place with 100 of our Formation Leaders gathered in Nashville, TN. Their input was added to the document in time for presentation to the general membership at the Annual Membership Meeting. This plan was then completed and received board approval in November of 2019.
- The Purposeful Plan is intended to be living and dynamic. As actions are completed and as objectives and approaches progress toward completion, additional areas may come into focus and be added to the Plan. Similarly, priorities may change over time and certain aspects of the Purposeful Plan may no longer be pursued. We pray, with God’s help, to remain peaceful, prayerful and joyful as we work together to accomplish the tasks before us.