The purpose of the Parish Pastoral Council is to explore pastoral matters, as directed by the Pastor, to consider them thoroughly, objectively and compassionately, to develop practical conclusions, and to make specific recommendations to the Pastor. Furthermore, the council will assist the pastor in implementing his decisions.
Pastoral council members are chosen, above all, for their ability to accomplish the main task of the council, which is to investigate, consider and recommend practical conclusions. Candidates are registered parishioners fully initiated in the Catholic faith and involved in parish activities. They reflect the parish’s various neighborhoods, social and professional groups, and apostolate. They are parishioners noted for their faith, good morals and prudence. Council members must be committed to volunteering a reasonable amount of time and effort to perform the work of the council in a timely manner.
The council consists of the Pastor and the Parochial Vicar, plus 12 elected members, and up to three members appointed by the Pastor from the parish community at large. Elected members serve a term of three years, terms are staggered to provide continuity. Thus four new members are elected every year. Outgoing members must wait one year to be elibible for re-nomination to the council.
The Parish Pastoral Council meets once a month from September to June. The Pastor may convene special meetings at any time he sees fit. At the January meeting each year the meeting dates and times for that calendar year are established. Meetings are generally two hours long and the council may vote to extend the time if needed. Between monthly meetings councilors should be available to work on standing or ad hoc committees or to participate in projects.
Recognizing that we receive from God the faith and wisdom that we apply in investigating pastoral matters and in discerning what is justly appropriate for all the people of God whom we represent, all meetings shall open and close with a prayer, led by an assigned council member.
At the December meeting each year, the pastor reflects with the council on the accomplishments of the past year, as well as, changes or improvements that are needed in the future operation of the council.