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Last updated 5th May 2021

Vision Update

Over the course of 2020 the Diocese engaged in a ‘Vision Update’ through which we sought to identify what is going well and where the challenges are as we seek to realise our Vision of seeing Healthy Churches Transforming Communities in 2026. This Update began with a ‘Parish Vision Survey’ and has encompassed prayer and extensive feedback from parishes and representative groups including Deanery Synods, Areas Deans and Bishop’s Council in order that plans focus on what will really make a difference to realising our Vision.

The conversations naturally included consideration of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic which has had such a major bearing on the life of the Church in recent times.

A new Vision Implementation Plan (2021 – 2024) resulted from the Vision Update exercise, a draft of which was considered at all deanery synods in Autumn 2020 and feedback absorbed prior to it being finalised. 

It opens by explaining the Vision of ‘Healthy Churches Transforming Communities’ in more detail through providing:

  • A clearly articulated and theologically grounded Vision of a Transformed Lancashire drawing on Isaiah 65
  • A completely refreshed ‘Marks of Healthy Church’ using the image of a healthy tree
  • An exposition of the Foundations on which Vision 2026 rests, acknowledging that the most important thing is that we pray faithfully, repent, seek God’s face and ask that He would pour out His Spirit across the Diocese of Blackburn.

It then describes the four major building blocks of the Vision and activities planned against each:

Before moving on to outline other important aspects of the delivery of Vision 2026:

  • Articulating contexts where the diocese will intervene to establish or maintain a Christian presence
  • The vital roles played by the wider diocesan family including the role of Blackburn Cathedral, Whalley Abbey and Chaplaincies
  • Defining the visionary role of those teams and activities that ‘Enable’ Vision 2026 including vision support, finance, communications, property and recruitment
  • Committing to various initiatives to support clergy wellbeing 

Detailed Aspirations in relation to Vision 2026 including measurable outcomes are provided as an annex.

It concludes with the refreshed Diocesan Vision 2026 Prayer:

“Heavenly Father, we embrace Your call for us to make disciples, to be witnesses, to grow leaders and to inspire children and young people.  Give us eyes to see Your vision, ears to hear the prompting of Your Spirit and courage to follow in the footsteps of your Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen”

The full version of the plan is available here and the next phase of Vision 2026 officially launched on Sunday 23rd May at Blackburn Cathedral.