PARISH OF THE SACRED HEART – PARISH PASTORAL COUNCIL
Minutes of the meeting held on TUESDAY 19th APRIL 2016
PRESENT: Father James Walsh, John Bolger, Hilary Bolger, Adrian Rudman, Mary Edmonds, Carol Shippey, Robert Hardie, Frances Green, Chris Falla, Michael Haughton and Secretary Clare Hardie
- APOLOGIES: Agnieska Gabriel, Deacon Ron O’Toole, Frances Dickerson
Fr. James began the meeting with Prayer.
- It was agreed to try and finish the meeting by 8.45 p.m.
- MINUTES OF THE MEETING of the 16th February 2016 were approved following a few typing corrections.
It was agreed that in future the draft minutes would be circulated as soon as they had been typed up. Once everyone had notified any necessary amendments, Clare would place a copy in each church and on the website.
4. MATTERS ARISING
New Evangelisation – Rob and John had spoken after the meeting and John will attend the Event on Saturday 2nd July
Parish Finances – Fr. James confirmed that the subject had been discussed as agreed but he would need to check the minutes as to what decision had been made. Nick Sutherland will be giving a report on the parish finances at the Annual Meeting. Michael said the reason he had hoped a drive on increasing the weekly collections should have taken place alongside the Alive in Faith campaign was that several people had told him that they were not in a position to commit to Alive in Faith but would be willing to increase their weekly plate giving. Fr. James said the Parish was still in a good financial position although the weekly collection had reduced slightly possibly due to deaths and parishioners moving away from the Parish. He had decided that the Parish needed a few weeks ‘breathing space’ after Alive in Faith had finished in order to celebrate the Resurrection before the Parish finances were addressed but thought that ‘a plea from the pulpit’ from either himself, which he dislikes doing, or a member of the finance committee particularly to tax payers to suggest they Gift Aid their offerings would be a good idea, he will talk to Nick Sutherland about the best way forward.
Alive in Faith – Fr. James distributed the latest update from the Alive in Faith team. Nine further parishes were just beginning their campaigns. We had achieved pledges of £131320, which was £11320 above our target and represented 102 gifts of £1284 in average. We had an uptake of 49%, which was amongst the highest uptake in the Diocese. Rob thanked Carol and the other volunteers for all their hard work assisting Fr. James with the necessary visits. Carol said she felt that the meeting held at St. John of the Cross had been very worthwhile and Fr. James said he thought it went a long way to allay peoples concerns about Alive in Faith.
Parish Annual Meeting – John confirmed that our speakers will be Gervais Kouloungou, the Deanery Representative for Refugees and Hala Marie an Egyptian refugee who had come here with her family and now runs Hala’s house. Gervais is also involved with the Red Cross. The timetable for the evening would be as follows; Fr. James will welcome everyone and give his brief talk, then we will have supper. During pudding and tea/coffee Rob will give his brief report. This will be followed by the Finance Report from Nick Sutherland. Rob will then introduce our speakers who will be asked to speak for about 20 mins each and hopefully there will be time for some questions at the end. It was suggested that a donation of £50 each would be welcomed by the speakers. John and Hilary will ask St. Luke’s Church in Norwich for some up to date leaflets and display boards. Katie Maidment is providing a hand held microphone for the speakers. It was hoped that the meeting would end by about 9.30 at the latest.
- YEAR OF MERCY
Rob thanked Fr. James for celebrating Divine Mercy Sunday for the first time in our Parish. He wished to express thanks from the PPC to Agnieska and the Polish community for the delicious refreshments after the service and to Adrian for obtaining the Divine Mercy leaflets. Next year we need to make sure parishioners know about the service well in advance as many more would have like to attend. Adrian will ask Tony Dady for copies of the pictures of the Crosses at Walsingham, which have suggestions for The Year of Mercy. John has placed a link to the Year of Mercy on the Parish website. The 24 hours with The Lord had taken place at St. John’s Cathedral over the weekend of the 4/5th March but information about the event had not been widely publicised in the Parishes. The next event will be the Diocesan Pilgrimage to Walsingham on the 2nd May and there are lists in each church for people wanting a lift in the coach. The Diocesan Children’s Pilgrimage to Walsingham will be on Monday 30th May.
Rob has spoken to Stephen Matthews from CAFOD and he is willing to come and help us run 5 sessions on Laudato Sii. These will be held in the Parish Hall from 5-6 p.m. on Sunday 19th June, led by Stephen Matthews, Sunday 26th June led by Fr. James, Sunday 3rd July led by John Bolger, Sunday 10th July led by Rob Hardie and Sunday 17th July led by Stephen Matthews. Clare will book the hall with Annabelle and John and Clare will prepare a flyer for inclusion with the Parish bulletin. John suggested inviting the church communities in North Walsham and Stalham as a lot of people are very in tune with Pope Francis’ teachings on the environment. An invitation to join our sessions will also be sent to Cromer and Sheringham Parishes.
On the 3rd June the Diocese will be celebrating 40 Years and there will be a Mass at St. John’s Cathedral that evening. The Secular Franciscans are leading ‘A Norwich Pilgrimage’ from St. John’s Cathedral, via the Julian Shrine to the Anglican Cathedral on Sunday 24th July.
Fr. Paul Maddison is leading a Pilgrimage to the Holy Land in October, more details to follow in the Parish Bulletin
- On going Formation for Children after First Communion
Frances reported that she had tried to have some discussion with the older children as to how they felt they would like to be more involved in the Church. It seems that once they reach the age of 9-10 they would really rather not come to Church at all especially as there are so many other draws on their time. The older children do come back briefly for Confirmation preparation but once that is over they are rarely seen. The Faith Food and Fun Group had tried to involve the youth in activities with some success in the past. It was suggested that perhaps we should consult Hamish McQueen the Director of the Diocesan Youth Service for some ideas as to how to keep our Youth engaged. Was there any possibility of a Children’s Choir? The Anglican Parish Church in Cromer has a very active Folk Group, which plays regularly for services. Could we involve the children in reading the Bidding Prayers, Greeting Parishioners and Taking the Collections and being part of the Offertory Procession, as this would help them feel they had a role in the Parish? As we are not having a Parish Fete this year it was agreed to have a Parish Teddy Bears Picnic on Sunday 10th July, and a working group of Fr. James, Frances and Carol will ask a few other parishioners to be involved in organising the Picnic
- PARISH PASTORAL COUNCILLORS REPORTS
Sacred Heart – Nothing in particular to report as they do not have Forum as such but Hilary says Parishioners gather for coffee after Mass each Sunday and she and the other PPC representatives are usually there for people to discuss any issues.
St. John of the Cross – A Cambodian Style Mass was held last week to celebrate the Cambodian New Year. Rob thanked Katie and Bob and Carol for organising a lovely Mass, which involved lots of the children. There had been another arson attack on the church yesterday; fortunately the damage was limited to the side entrance porch. Peter Adamson was dealing with the Police who were unable to attend until this afternoon. There would be a working party on Thursday to clean the soot and smoke damage. The Queen’s Birthday will be celebrated by parishioners joining the street party in Aylsham Market Square on the 12th June. There will be a Wine and Cheese Evening at Rob and Clare’s house on Saturday 18th June to help raise funds for the church re-decoration fund, this will be done at the end of May. The dissemination of information about events in the Parish had been discussed at the Forum and they wanted the PPC Minutes to be available much earlier and planned events properly publicised. Fr. James suggested a weekly/monthly A5 sheet in the bulletin as people don’t always look at the events calendar on the parish website
St. Helen’s – Mary said that Frances Dickerson had agreed to be a PPC representative; unfortunately she was on holiday this week. She has agreed to be the St Helen’s representative on the Churches Together on the Broads Committee, taking over from Patricia Newton. They were due to have a Forum on the 14th May
Deacon Ron had asked if it would be possible to have a meeting to discuss Pope Francis’ Apostolic Exhortation ‘Amoris Laetitia’. All thought this would be a good idea once we had had a chance to read and digest the Exhortation.
9. DATE OF NEXT MEETING
Tuesday 28th June 2016 in the Parish Room
Chris Falla asked if we could fix the dates for the whole year’s meetings as this would help people avoid missing meetings when they are trying to plan holidays etc.
Fr. James then concluded the meeting with the Our Father and other prayers.