Thank you to everyone who participated in the first round of consultation sessions. The purpose of this consultation round was to capture parishioners’ reaction to Cardinal John Dew’s request to reduce the number of churches. It was not to get feedback specifically on the answer to this challenge.
As you might expect there has been a great deal of feedback which we reviewed at last week’s Pastoral Council meeting. Given the extensive and varied nature of the feedback we did not attempt to distill it into simple ideas, although we did identify some themes such as:
- Our communities are important to us and loss of these communities through church building closure is a real concern.
- Ours is a sacramental church and somewhat inward looking.
- Further clarifying the roles of the laity and priests is an important issue.
- The connection between our schools and churches is an important one.
- We need a vision for the place of our buildings in the promotion of our mission and use for social justice.
As we move into the next phase of the consultation, the Council has decided to make the feedback from the consultation sessions available to all parishioners via the website. We ask you to take time to look at it and reflect on it. We have not included all individual written submissions, but these can be made available also if parishioners wish to see them and those who wrote them are happy for us to do so.
We now move into the phase of beginning to formulate possible solutions.
The first part of that will be a Parish session on Saturday 3rd August at St Anne’s Hall, from 1:30pm to 4:30pm.
Please mark this date in your diaries and let the Parish Office know if you will be attending.
Parish Council Chair