2019-2021 Strategic Plan

Download Entire Document:  2019-2021 Strategic Plan




“His Faithfulness Continues Through All Generations.” -Ps. 100:5


As responsible stewards of God’s many gifts, planning and discernment are needed at every level of ministry. St. Francis Xavier is undertaking an intensive Strategic Planning process with the goal of using our God-given resources most effectively. The goals of the plan outlined below will directly benefit our parish faithful, our programs and ministries, for the fulfillment of our mission and the Greater Glory of God.

Together we will engage in these six steps:


St. Francis Xavier is a Catholic-Jesuit Parish ignited by the Eucharist to pray, serve, do justice, and love.


St. Francis Xavier is a an historic Jesuit Parish located in the heart of downtown Missoula, serving a diverse population, and dedicated to serving those in need, we have a particular commitment to beautiful and prayerful liturgy, which attracts parishioners from throughout the greater Missoula area. We are grounded in Ignatian Spirituality, a service oriented spirituality for everyday life knowing that God is present in our world and active in our lives.  We strive to increase our diverse membership, through family focused programs, inclusive liturgy, and welcoming efforts.

Our Five Strategic Goals:

I – Liturgy and Prayer

Shaped by its Jesuit tradition, liturgy at St. Francis Xavier will continue to provide an experience of Christ present in the community with the power to engage and transform lives in the heart of Missoula.

  • The fundamental elements of the liturgy will be strategically chosen, and dramatically presented with dignity and clarity to encourage the “full, active, and conscious participation” of the congregation (Vatican II, Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy, 14).
  • Drawn to St. Francis Xavier by the beauty of its church, the strength of its mission, the power of the preaching and the impact of the liturgy, parishioners and visitors will strive to become disciples and coworkers
  • We will continue to develop and implement spiritual, formational and service programming that are tailored to both youth, young adults and young families.
  • Visitors will be welcomed and included
  • The beauty and history of the church building will be enhanced, respected and accentuated to its fullest to draw people into worship, fellowship and discipleship, sharing the treasure of Jesuit spiritual leadership.
  • Offer a variety of spiritual growth opportunities and choices that will appeal to a broad population- in prayer, education, spiritual activities and retreats, with both general and Jesuit-specific themes.
  • We will makes special efforts for the pastoral care of parishioners to ensure welcome for our young families.


II – Community Growth

St. Francis Xavier will be widely recognized in the greater Missoula area as a place where people are invited and welcomed, in the Jesuit tradition, to grow spiritually, and as a community of committed persons.

  • We will create clear & consistent models of: Parish Councils, and Commissions including consistent guidelines on membership, function, and relationship between each, ensuring that such bodies are in place and caring for the mission of the Parish.
  • We will widen the circle of St. Francis Xavier so that the constitutive role of social justice may be experienced by all parishioners and community partners. Francis Xavier will be a leader in its outreach to the poor and marginalized and a beacon of welcome to all regardless of race, gender, or sexual orientation.
  • We will provide curricula & instruction—through various media, geared to youth and young adult persons and young families.
  • We will improve the technological systems necessary to support the Marketing Plan, facilitate and broaden connections among the staff and faith community and expand the parish reach.
  • We will coordinate & encourage small group prayer opportunities for all parishioners, as well as Ignatian retreats directed towards the many & varied parts of the community.
  • We will develop an integrated internal communications strategy that uses various media to gather & disseminate information about activities, opportunities, needs, and deadlines for the parish community and those beyond the Parish boundaries.
  • We will reach out to the Latino community in Missoula and in the Deanery.


III – Finance

St. Francis Xavier will achieve financial security and become a self-sustaining parish to better serve its community.

  • We will develop and implement Financial Plans that support parish development and growth.
  • We will ensure transparent financial reporting and communication of financial matters quarterly.
  • We will create a coordinated office of Development & Stewardship that will provide information & develop resources to secure Parish goals, and to engage all members of the community in appropriate levels of support.
  • We will assure appropriate institutional and financial support from both the Diocese of Helena and the Jesuit West Province.
  • We actively participate in the programs and priorities of the diocese and Jesuit West Province: financial and apostolic priorities of the diocese and the Province (Annual Catholic Appeal, Catholic Relief Services, Sister Parishes, and Jesuit Relief Services)


IV – Buildings & Grounds

St. Francis Xavier will maintain its historically significant buildings and grounds and provide a physical environment that is comfortable, attractive and welcoming.

  • We will budget and implement ongoing repair / maintenance reserve accounts for all parish facilities.
  • We will replace the Parish Center addition – restoring original rectory building.
  • We will plan, budget and implement the new addition including: new building, grotto area and welcoming courtyard.
  • We will renovate Reidy Hall and lower handicapped entrance.
  • We will catalog, conserve, and curate the church’s art and historical artifacts.
  • We will assess/pursue mausoleum & columbarium on the parish campus.
  • We will assess/pursue parking options on and around the parish campus.


V –Parish Planning

St. Francis Xavier will be a mission-focused parish, striving continuously for improvement and growth in its capacity to proclaim and live the Gospel.

  • Francis Xavier Parish Pastoral Council will support the staff in forming and pursuing a pastoral vision that addresses the fulfillment of the parish mission.
  • Parishioner leadership will work to foster spiritual growth and development of the parish by inviting and engaging all people to a full and active life of faith.
  • Parishioner leadership will assess the changing needs of our ministries as well as changing community demographics that may affect our facilities, budgets, and staff in order to continue to support the work of the parish.



The Pastoral Council assists St. Francis Xavier Parish as a whole by: providing support and consultation to the Pastor; discerning the priorities of the Parish; assisting commissions in the execution of their responsibilities.


The Finance Council assists St. Francis Xavier Parish as a whole by:

Providing consultation to the Pastor on financial and property matters; examining and approving the budget and spending; advising on issues of Parish advancement and fund-raising.


The purpose of the Parish Life Commission is to promote and deepen the involvement of parishioners with the St. Francis Xavier community and to sustain the living traditions and practices of the Church by:encouraging and supporting family focused programs already in place; developing programs with particular focus on young families and welcoming new members into the Parish; making current members feel welcomed through celebrations and social opportunities; provide and support an integrated experience of parish life across all commissions by working specifically with Faith Formation, Spirituality, Liturgy and Social Outreach.

The Parish Life Commission recently created a Welcome Folder for all new parishioners which invites participation in all aspects of parish life.  Special events such as the Easter Egg Hunt, Pet Blessing, and Parish Picnic serve as a means of bringing parishioners together throughout the year.  The Parish Life Commission also promotes spiritual growth through the support of the Spiritual Exercises and offering Adult Faith Formation classes. 


The Faith Formation Commission forms and supports a spiritually and intellectually active community at St. Francis Xavier by:

developing educational programs appropriate to age and circumstances; supporting programs that nurture a sacred relationship with God, creation, and our local and global communities; fostering dialogue and discussion in the Catholic Jesuit tradition.


The Faith Justice Commission builds a community of gospel love and care at St. Francis Xavier by:

St. Francis Xavier Parish will continue to share information and promote opportunities for parishioners to engage in direct service with those in need and to assist in events or programs that build greater companionship with the poor or marginalized. St. Francis Xavier will continue to try to find ways to advocate and work for justice in the efforts to transform structures of poverty and injustice. To accomplish this, we will work within the Missoula Interfaith Collaborative through the creation and training of a new core team of volunteers to work alongside other faith communities in the Missoula area and with the existing Jesuit works. We will support the outreach to the Latino community and would like to add to that support to the Native American, refugee and LGBTQ communities.


The Liturgy and Worship Commission promotes and deepens the communal prayer of the St. Francis Xavier community by:

sustaining the living traditions and practices of the Church; developing and supporting other forms of prayer and spiritual expression; evaluating and discerning the on-going worship of the People of God at St. Francis Xavier.  The commission seeks to provide a meaningful experience through the ministry of musicians and vocalists so that the people of the church will experience the most present form of Christ in their celebration of the liturgy at St. Francis Xavier.  Additionally, the musicians, ushers and altar servers provide the welcoming warmth for all those who wish to worship in its sanctuary and actively participate in the liturgy.


The Spirituality Commission facilitates and carries forward the tradition of the Jesuit Charism of St. Francis Xavier Parish, specifically through the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius and provides opportunities for grace and spiritual development by:

encouraging and supporting programs already in place; Developing an information space in the vestibules for info on parish Ignatian Spirituality Programs and opportunities throughout the year; Providing and supporting an integrated experience of Ignatian Spirituality to all parishioners by working cooperatively with other Parish Commissions, specifically, Faith Formation, Parish Life, Liturgy and Social Justice.  The Spirituality Commission seeks to “attract and engage a diverse range of individuals” and seeks to find ways to better serve the Native American and Latino communities.  The Commission is preparing to offer day retreats for men and women who are in transitional housing and who have gone through an addiction recovery program.


The Facilities Commission is responsible for the upkeep, maintenance, and planning for the St. Francis Xavier Parish campus by:

meeting regularly to identify, assess, and prioritize the facility related maintenance and improvements needs of the parish with an eye toward long-range planning, budgeting, and growth.



  1. While respecting the need for a variety of competencies, Commissions/Councils should seek to represent the diversity of the Parish in all possible respects, drawing members from differing communities and works of the Parish.
  1. Commission members should be active Parishioners, i.e., registered, with a current Stewardship statement, and engaged in the life of the Parish.
  1. Commission members may not be employed by any part of the Parish over which the particular commission/council has responsibility.
  1. Commission members may serve on only one council at a time.

4.1. Commissions should consist of at least 9 but no more than 15 members, nominated by the commission and approved by the Pastor;

4.2.Commission members will, ordinarily serve 3-year terms, with ⅓ of the commission members transitioning annually.

4.3. The term of a commission member can be renewed once; however, after a second term, there should ideally be at least a one year break before the individual is reappointed to the commission.

4.4. Council members are chosen from the Parish by the Pastor, discerned with input from staff and currently serving members.

4.4.1. The Pastoral Council members serve a 3 year term, turning over in its entirety after that term. Multiple terms, though exceptional, may be offered, at the discretion of the Pastor.

4.4.2. The Finance Council members, due to diocesan requirements, may serve indefinite terms, reviewed annually to assure diverse voices.

In the initial years, the desire to get a 1/3 turnover rate will necessitate staggered terms.