St Francis Xavier’s Church Parish Advisory Council
Minutes for 21st January 2016
1. Welcome to all those present: Fr Michael (Fr M), Darren Debattista (DD) Chairman, Jaroslav Liska (JL), John Cook (JC), Margaret Bubb (MB), Paul Williams (PW), Val Vaughan-Williams (VV-W), Diana Pearce (DP), Ella Cwiertnia (EC), Hugh Davis (HD), Jane Gennard (JG), Pat Maclean (PMac), Joanna Williams (JW), Stephen Booth (SB).
2. Opening prayer: The meeting opened with a prayer led by (Fr M).
3. Apologies: William Fawcett (WF), Dominic Fawcett (DF)
4. Minutes of the previous meeting:
The minutes of 11th November 2015 which had been circulated previously, were agreed and signed by (DB).
5. Matters arising:
9 (PW) We are still awaiting quotes for glossy covers for the ‘Welcome Leaflets’.
The final total profit for the Parish Fair was £3070 (£2414 net)
6. Fr Michael’s Report:
(a) Since last PAC: Baptisms 1; Weddings 1; Deaths 3.
(b) We are now in the Jubilee Year of Mercy and we are encouraged to take part in the special events organised throughout the year, such as the Special Mass at Belmont in March or join the book club that will look at the texts of the year. A Parish visit to the Holy Door at Belmont could also be arranged.
(c) The Masses at the Parish School are always well prepared by the children. We welcomed Key Stage 2 to the 10.00 am Mass on the feast of Christ the King and younger children of Key Stage 1 last week. These are always joyous occasions and the Parishioners are grateful for the extra work put in by the staff.
(d) The service ‘Light Up a Life’ on 9th December in support of the work of St Michael’s Hospice was a moving and beautiful experience and we have asked to be included in their plans for next year.
(e) I am grateful to the two brother monks from Belmont who assisted with our Advent Penitential Services in the church and at the school.
(f) Both the school group and the parish children have had their invitation Masses in preparation for their First Holy Communion and the school put on another excellent Carol Service on 16th December.
(g) I am grateful to those who worked so hard to make the Parish Christmas Fair such a success, not only for raising money but also the bringing of people together working as a community.
(h) The Christmas Crib was superbly constructed and credit must go to Melbin and his young friends who worked over 4 days to complete it. Many visitors commented favourably.
(i) The Annexe has had some painting re-touched including the cabinet containing the controls for the projector and screen. The Archbishop will formally open and bless the Annexe on 4th February 2016 which will be attended by some of the biggest donors such as Clive and Sylvia Richards, Monique Heijn and the Sciavon/Symonds family. All parishioners are encouraged to attend also.
(j) A Dean is yet to be appointed. The Archbishop has made it known that he expects the priests of the Deanery to elect one, by the time he attends the next Priests Meeting on Shrove Tuesday.
k) The Centenary of the Archdiocese Celebrations continue with a Mass at Belmont on Sunday 7th February at 3.00 pm. Belmont was the first Cathedral for the Archdiocese and guests from all Benedictine houses have been invited. There should be Parish involvement too.
(a) The Alpha Course is going well with interesting speakers brining insights to the various topics.
(b) As the Mission advised we should try for 3 actions or initiatives each year. With that in mind how about using the new excellent sound and vision system for film nights? Once a month would be good and (JC) has some ideas to get going. Hopefully others will come forward and do the same.
(c) A full sized replica of the Turin Shroud is coming to St Mary’s School in the spring and we can have it for a short while in our Hall (Annexe) for no cost only donations.
8. Mission Legacy:
(SB) We should re-visit every six months the points made at the end of the Mission. Established ‘Welcomers’ are a regular feature of weekend Masses, tea and coffee are available after Monday and Thursday Masses and a lunch club meets every Monday. We could now undertake more frequent and longer tea and coffee mornings or even breakfasts and we are still waiting for a ‘mums and tots’ group to get going. With more publicity in Newsletter and a dedicated spot on the notice board, we can keep parishioners involved and up-to-date. Action: Mums and Tots (JG, DP) Notices/Publicity (SB).
9. Youth Matters:
(JW) Recruitment of altar servers is a priority as many are coming up to university age or going to work and may not be around in the next 12-18 months Action: (FrM and Deacon Eddy) when visiting to school.
Can we look at acquiring smaller lighter oil candles for the younger altar servers so they can be acolytes? Yes. Action: (FrM, PW)
10. Reports from Members:
(EC) (a) The ‘Here For All’ Christmas Event went well with 60 people attending. Issues are planned for March, May and July with events planned in April and June. Articles welcome
(b) HVOSS meetings are very informative. Carer’s Support Group of disabled children would like meetings once a month in Annexe (Hall). Action (EC, PW)
(C) An event to celebrate the Queen’s Birthday on 21st April is planned.
(d) Year of Mercy plans? How about transmission from Rome on Divine Mercy Sunday in Polish and English? (FrM)We will have a Divine Mercy Mass at SFX on 3rd April.
(e) Next Here For All Meeting 11th February
SFX Finance Quarterly Update at Dec 2015
The table below shows our Sunday Offertory totals, including Standing Orders, v. last year -
2015/16 / per wk 2014/15 / per wk
Qtr1 Apr-Jun 12 wks 16,231 / 1353 12 wks 14,830 / 1236
Qtr2 Jul-Sept 13 wks 16,173 / 1244 13 wks 16,388 / 1261
Qtr3 Oct-Dec 13 wks 16,340 / 1257 13 wks 16,537 / 1272
Apr-Dec 39 wks 48,744 / 1283 39 wks 47,755 / 1257
Qtr4 Jan-Mar 13 wks 13 wks 16,580 / 1275
Total Year 51 wks 64,335 / 1261
12. Matters raised by Parishioners/AOB
(PMac) Do we have a plan of fund-raising activities in the Annexe? Can we have something in Newsletter asking for suggestions? Action: (PW)
(FrM) (a) Notices to be made reminding users of the Annexe (Parish Hall) that they must remember security and to not leave food in the cupboard. Action: (PW).
(b) Thanks to Brian Turner for redecorating the Parish Library at a reasonable cost of £300
(DP) Children at school learning prayers for Year of Mercy. Thank you for the new poster. Children continuing to raise money for Charities and food larder.
(JW) As I have now moved to Newport I am going to step down from the PAC. (FrM and DB) tabled their thanks to Jo for all the work for the parish over many years.
(PW) (a) We have 2 vacancies on PAC. Could all PAC Members ask someone if they would like to serve on PAC? Action: (ALL)
(b) Can we think of something to replace the fundraising ‘Fair Trade’ used to do e.g. send a cow or water aid? Action: (All)
(c) It was agreed that Paul Williams and Darren Debattista are to sign ‘Small Lottery Return’ to Herefordshire Council.
(EC) (a) Are there plans to renovate/redecorate the Sacristy? (FrM) Yes in the near future.
(b) Mass at 5.00 pm on Christmas Eve very welcome for families in particular. Let’s hope to repeat next year
(SB) There are interesting articles from ‘The Tablet’ in the Narthex
(JC) To ensure we keep church open and fulfil other initiatives could we think about a full-time paid church warden/parish worker?
(MB) An extra shelf in the cupboard in the Hall (Annexe) would be useful. Action: (FrM, PW) to investigate
(DP) We ought to have focussed items in Newsletter asking for volunteers.
Dates of Next Meetings:
Thursday 25th February 2016 (7.15pm in Presbytery)
Thursday 21st April 2016 (7.15pm in Presbytery)
Meeting ended at 8.40 pm with a prayer