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Pray with me

March 18, 2018
Archbishop Paul S. Coakley

It has been nearly five years since the publication of my pastoral letter, “Go Make Disciples.” In that statement, I laid out a pastoral vision and three clear priorities for our archdiocese: the new evangelization, faith formation and Hispanic ministry.

The letter was the fruit of an in-depth process of listening sessions, focus groups, surveys and prayerful discernment. In seeking to align our efforts with what the Holy Spirit is saying to the Church in Oklahoma and the pastoral guidance of recent popes, we have been focusing on forming missionary disciples.


We have been very intentional in the implementation of that vision. We have invested in a study of the culture of our archdiocesan staff, which has yielded a reorganization plan to help us engage in forming missionary disciples more collaboratively. We have studied the situation of overcrowding in many of our metro area churches that serve the Hispanic community, and subsequently purchased a golf course on which to build a large new church.

We have commissioned a study of the needs of our Catholic schools in the archdiocese. We have conducted a feasibility study to test the readiness of the archdiocese for a first-ever archdiocesan capital campaign. These various initiatives have yielded a mountain of important data and collected wisdom from around the archdiocese.

Even as we have been gathering this information, the Lord has blessed the Church in Oklahoma with the recognition of the first martyr and parish priest ever beatified from the United States, Blessed Stanley Rother. It has been an eventful few years!

These many initiatives and unexpected blessings have aligned in a remarkable way and set the stage for a future full of hope.

The vision laid out in “Go Make Disciples” endures. The pastoral priorities, however, need to be updated. The plan contained in the pastoral letter is a five-year plan and those five years are now expiring. Truth be told, we have more than enough data to guide us through the next five years and beyond.

I have established a new strategic pastoral planning team under the leadership of Jim Beckman, executive director of our Secretariat for Evangelization and Catechesis, to lead us into the next planning cycle. The mandate of this team is to continue to mine the data we already have collected, to refine it as necessary, and to develop an updated strategic pastoral plan that will lead us forward for the next 10 to 12 years.

One of the first steps in this process is to build a team of dedicated intercessors, or prayer warriors! That’s where each of you come in. We are seeking the Lord’s wisdom and guidance.

Our goal is to find 2,018 committed intercessors to join together in prayer for the success of this strategic pastoral planning process and the archdiocesan capital campaign – One Church, Many Disciples – which is already underway.

We ask everyone to pray daily for the success of this initiative, using the special prayer, attending a daily Mass each week and making a Eucharistic Holy Hour monthly for the intentions of the 2018 Intercessory Prayer Team.

Encourage your family members, fellow parishioners and friends to join this initiative. Thank you for responding to this invitation.

Join Archbishop Coakley as a member of the 2018 Prayer Team!
Text Prayer2018 to 84576 or go to