After a nearly yearlong process, administrators and members of the Bishop McNamara Catholic School board of trustees approved a five-year strategic plan for its schools, located in three communities, including Bradley, Bourbonnais and Kankakee.

Fr. Dan Belanger celebrates the opening school Mass with junior high students

President Terry Granger made the announcement this week. He said that the purpose of the plan was to ensure that the legacy, history and commitment to student success — furthered by Viatorians, starting in 1931 — continues for years to come.

After rounds of meetings and surveying parents, faculty and students, the strategic plan centered around six pillars, and the first among them was its Catholic culture. Successive pillars include: academic excellence, resource stewardship, strategic leadership, enrollment management and student life.

School officials plan to heighten its Catholic culture by increasing the frequency of Masses, as well as build more retreat experiences, further its tradition of service to the marginalized and provide a mission experience for students.

Terry Granger, center, works closely with Fr. Dan Belanger, left, and Fr. Richard Pighini, right, in advancing the Catholic culture of BMCS

Look for Viatorians to play a prominent role in advancing these goals. Just this week, Fr. Dan Belanger, CSV, celebrated Mass with junior high students, which engaged these young people in all aspects of the liturgy.

Associate Michelle Barrie was named Coordinator of the Office of Catholic Ministry

Last month, Associate Michelle Barrie was named Coordinator of the Catholic Ministry Office, charged with carrying out the school’s goals of more retreats, service opportunities and a mission experience. She is up to the challenge. For nearly 20 years, she has led Kankakee teens on a mission trip to rural Pembroke Township and just this summer, she worked to create a new mission trip for BMCS students, called Camp SING, or Servants in the Name of God.