Minutes of the Parish Pastoral Council Meeting
Thursday 15th March 2018
Thursday 15th March 2018
- Opening prayer
- Present: Father Clement, Emma Bowley, Amy Jarkulisz, Pam Looi, Veronica Brown, Terry Breed, Bron Coleman, Cath Jackson, Peter Fryer. Apologies: received from Kathryn, Marlene and Rebecca
- Matter Arising from last meeting
- Parish retreat: scheduled for Saturday 9th June. A list will be posted at the back of church for parishioners to show their interest. There will be regular reminders in the weekly newsletter.
- Walsingham Pilgrimage: Bron is liaising with Monica (Syston parish) regarding the logistics and she will be collecting names of those interested. Cost is thought to be about £20 (tea and coffee extra). Pick-up points will be at the two parishes and possibly Barrow. There will be a special prayer offered and candle lit for Terry in recognition of his tremendous efforts over the years in organising this traditional parish event. A reminder will be placed in the newsletter.
- Book of Remembrance: the work of typing the lists is ongoing and should be completed soon. (Peter)
- Mass preparation routine checklist: a copy of the checklist provided by Wilf was distributed to those present. All council members are to return the list to Peter with comments, additions or requests for clarification by Monday 9th April.
- Multas gratias tibi ago: Wilf had already received letters from Bishop Patrick and Cardinal Nichols thanking him for his long service. A letter had also arrived today from the President of the Guild of St Stephen expressing his admiration of and gratitude for the work that Wilf has done over the past seventy-seven years as an altar server. The discussion was extended to others in the parish who are deserving of special recognition (e.g. Terry Cantle and his work as Walsingham pilgrimage organiser, Eucharistic Minister, Reader) though it was stressed that this would need to be done with great subtlety as there are those who would not welcome being singled out. Council members should mention to Father the names of anyone they thought deserved such recognition. At the very least a letter from the PPC on behalf of the parish would seem eminently suitable. Perhaps this topic should be raised at the PPC once a year.
- Mass attendance: concern had been raised by a parishioner regarding poor Mass attendance and the possible threat to St. Gregory’s existence if the decline continued. Reduced Sunday attendance means, of course, reduced Parish income. Father confirmed that this was a topic of discussion in every parish. The proximity of at least four other Mass Centres (Rearsby Convent (for the time being), Ratcliffe College and the two Loughborough Parishes) and the relative early time of Mass were mentioned, but this could not be allowed to stifle any initiatives. The aim is build up a community and create a sense of belonging. Possible actions included (1) identify those who no longer attend so that Father can visit them; (2) establish a visiting service (in pairs) to approach those we have not seen for some time; (3) November being the month when we especially remember the dead, we could access the data base of addresses that we use for the distribution of raffle tickets and post/deliver a prayer card inviting people to provide names of friends or family that they would like to be remembered at Mass. At the same time they would be invited to attend Mass to pray with us. Based on the sale of raffle tickets, there are several families who support the parish without actually attending Sunday Mass at St. Gregory’s. This might be a way of encouraging them to join us in a more permanent basis. This idea gained much support and it was felt that it should take place in late September/October and be quite separate from the circulation of Christmas Fayre raffle tickets.
- Holy Week preparations: Maundy Thursday 7.30 Sileby in the church; Good Friday 3.00 in the church; Holy Saturday at Syston – time to be confirmed later. Rebecca had indicated that she is organising the readers of the Bidding Prayers on Good Friday and the volunteers to have their feet washed on Maundy Thursday.
- Hymn board: it was agreed that the simplest way to indicate hymn numbers to those attending Mass and seated in the School Room, was to acquire a white board and a set of dry markers. A new set of numbers is needed for the dark board as the current set is breaking down. Emma and Amy volunteered to see to this.
- Parish sponsored walk / picnic: Amy to liaise with the organiser (her dad!) to finalise a date. June 23rd seemed a popular date when the weather should be better and exams finished.
- Social Centre report: Bron reported a healthy state of affairs. The W.I. had a monthly booking; Adult Education had 3.5 hour sessions in a five week block; extra Pilates sessions were generating about £1000 per year; one group was behind in their payments, but this matter was in hand. The Council was made aware of the tireless efforts of Monica without whom the Centre could not be run as efficiently as it was.
- Finance Committee report: Father reported a current balance of £14,732.18 after some expensive work on fascias and soffits had been completed. Some details on the income/expenditure sheet were explained. The increase in Social Centre income was noted. Father Clement is to look into the options for replacing the current photocopier which is “on its last legs”. While parishioners donate what they can afford in the weekly collection, it was suggested that perhaps it was time to suggest that they re-appraise the level of their contribution as, for example, Standing Orders tend to be made and then forgotten about.
- AOB: there were no items to discuss.
- Date of next meeting: 5th July 7.30. There was no problem this evening with the Brownies using the hall until 7.30. We were able to start immediately after they had finished their session. It was agreed that, even if we had to start a few minutes late, this was preferable to meeting in the School Room which would necessitate switching on the heating for the whole church.
- Closing prayer led by Father Clement.
The meeting closed at 9.05
Circulation: Father Clement, Marlene Corrall, Emma Bowley, Amy Jarkulisz, Pam Looi, Veronica Brown, Terry Breed, Bron Coleman, Cath Jackson, Rebecca Jinks, Kathryn Timmons, Peter Fryer