SACRED HEART PARISH
SACRED HEART CHURCH, ST JOHN OF THE CROSS, ST HELEN’S CHURCHES
PARISH PASTORAL COUNCIL
Purpose of the Parish Pastoral Council:
To facilitate the active participation and collaboration of all parishioners in supporting and developing the life, worship and witness of the parish community, building up the body of Christ and fostering pastoral and missionary action, as well as working with, supporting and advising the parish priest in his responsibilities.
To integrate and care for the spiritual and temporal needs of the three churches, and to support and develop links on a local, diocesan and wider community basis.
Although the Council has no executive authority and any votes taken are consultative, participation in the council should be seen as an opportunity to play a responsible role in discerning and implementing the way forward for the parish in partnership with the parish priest who will always give full consideration to the views expressed.
- To encourage partnership between priest and people by discussion, reflection and planning.
- To promote a sense of community and shared vision within the three communities, while recognising their own individuality.
- To deepen spirituality – the basis of faith – which links faith to everyday life.
- To communicate effectively with the whole community.
- To implement the Diocesan Pastoral Plan.
- Initially, to elect two representatives from each church community. A third member from each church will be elected in November 2005.
- One member from each community will retire each year in rotation starting from November 2006. Each community is encouraged to have representatives who fully reflect the age range of the community.
- Each member may be re-elected for a further three years after which time the member must have a break for three years before being eligible for re-election. In the event of a PPC member leaving the council a replacement will be elected by the church community from which that member was elected. The newly elected councillor will complete the term of his or her predecessor.
- A chairman will be elected from within the Council for a period of 12 months. In the absence of the chair, the meeting will choose a replacement.
- The chairman or a member of the Council will represent the Council and the Parish on the Diocesan Council for the Laity.
- An independent secretary will be appointed by the Parish Council for the purpose of taking minutes and keeping records of Parish Council discussions and decisions. The secretary will be responsible for preparing the agenda for meetings in the instructions of the chair and the parish priest who is an ex-officio member of the Parish Council.
- The content of the agenda for meetings will be prepared by the chairman and the parish priest.
- The Parish Pastoral Council will hold an annual general meeting at which the chairman will make a report.
- If in the judgement of the Bishop or of the parish priest (always with the agreement of the Dean and Bishop), the Council ceases to operate in the best interests of the parish, the Council and its constitution or standing orders will be temporarily suspended by the parish priest. The Council will then be reconstituted within two months of any such suspension.
The Parish Pastoral Council will meet on a regular quarterly basis or at such other times as extraordinary or urgent items demand. Members of the parish are free to attend meetings of the Council but will not be eligible to vote. Meetings should last no longer than two hours. Decisions will be made by consensus, though should a vote become necessary, a simple majority would be sufficient. There should be no abstentions. In the event of a stalemate, the parish priest will have the casting vote.
Decisions of the Parish Pastoral Council will be regularly disseminated to the members of the parish by weekly newsletter, website, PPC minutes, community forums.
Prepared on 30th April 2005 and revised on 24th April 2006. Further revised on 27th July 2006 and 7th September 2021.