Saint thecla catholic church




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SAINT THECLA PARISH
PASTORAL COUNCIL AND COMMISSIONS
OPERATIONAL PROCEDURES
(Amended: January 26, 2010

SAINT THECLA CATHOLIC CHURCH

Clinton Township, Michigan

PREAMBLE AND MISSION STATEMENT


We, the people of Saint Thecla Parish, Clinton Township, Michigan, have been called through Baptism to a sharing in the life of God.



This gift of the Divine Life has placed upon us a special responsibility toward the Church established by Christ and its mission to the world.

This responsibility is common to all members of the Church – clergy, religious and laity – a responsibility that must be shouldered by all in a spirit of mutual understanding, confidence and love.

A great many benefits are to be derived from familiar dialogue and joyful sharing of our responsibility toward the Church and its saving mission in the world. We do adopt the following as the statement of our mission:
The Saint Thecla Parish family strives to serve God, the community and each other by living the Gospel through love, support and sharing of ourselves. By doing so, we nourish the family of God and foster the growth and development of the community.”


(Section I)
SAINT THECLA PASTORAL COUNCIL

Operational Procedures
I: NAME:
These operational procedures guide the Parish Pastoral Council, (the “Council”), for the Parish Community of Saint Thecla Catholic Church, Clinton Township, Michigan.
II: PURPOSE AND RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE COUNCIL:
A: The council is to be sensitive to the movement of the Spirit among God’s people, to work for a unified vision through consensus among its members, and to help the whole Parish to meet the challenge of being a Church in the contemporary world.
B: The purpose of the Council is to provide a structure which will enable the people of Saint Thecla Parish to:


  1. Assume their individual and collective responsibilities in a formation of a Christian Community in accordance of the directives of the Second Vatican Council and the proposals of Synod ’69.

  1. Reveal their temporal and spiritual needs, express their opinions, define goals and implement their decisions.




  1. Guide and participate in the apostolic work of the Church, as it is carried out on the Parish level in all aspects, including, but not limited to, the sanctification, education and social aspects.




  1. Enter into constructive, frequent and meaningful communication with members of Saint Thecla Parish Community, including the clergy, religious, staff and laity so that community objectives may be brought to fruition for the ultimate good of the Parish and of the larger Church community.


C. The responsibilities of the Council are to:


  1. Formulate Parish goals, short and long term, in light of the Mission Statement.




  1. Prioritize and approve the objectives, short and long term, developed by the Commissions, so that the Parish can properly budget all its resources, human as well as monetary.




  1. Review the evaluations of the objectives presented by each Commission in the spring of the year.




  1. Maintain an ongoing awareness through the Parish Commissions of the spiritual and temporal needs of the whole Parish community.




  1. Provide channels for effective two-way communication between:

    • the Council and its Commissions;

    • the Commissions themselves;

    • the Commissions and respective committees;

    • the Pastor, Pastoral Team and Staff, and the Parishioners;




  1. Serve as the primary consultative body making recommendations to the Pastor about the faith life of the Parish and its Pastoral Ministry.




  1. Provide representation to the Vicariate Pastoral Council.




  1. Review and approve an annual Parish budget for submission to the Archdiocese.




  1. Provide ongoing formation for the members of the Parish Pastoral Council.




  1. Review annually with each Commission, the groups that are encompassed by that Commission and assure that the appropriate Parish groups who request representation, have that representation on a Commission.




  1. Review and approve long range, (beyond one year), plans of the Parish and its Commissions.


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III. STRUCTURE OF THE COUNCIL




A. Eligibility




      1. All registered members of Saint Thecla Parish, at least seventeen, (17), years of age and confirmed, who are not lay employees or immediate family members, (i.e. persons residing in the same household), of lay employees of the Parish, are eligible for membership on the Council.


2. Only one person per immediate family is eligible to serve on the Council at the same time. Immediate family defined as persons residing in the same household, or parents, siblings and children, regardless of residence.


  1. Before persons are selected for the Council, they must experience an orientation to the role of the Council, should have an understanding of the Parish Mission Statement and be open to ongoing formation.


. B. Members of the Council are:



  1. The priest(s) assigned to the Parish




  1. Chairperson




  1. Vice-Chairperson




  1. Secretary




  1. A spokesperson from each of the five standing Commissions, (Worship, Parish Life, Stewardship, Christian Service, Christian Formation/Education). Each Commission is to assign an alternate to represent the designated spokesperson in the event of absence. At the last meeting of a term year, each of the five standing Commissions will select a spokesperson to the Council. These spokespersons will be seated at the first meeting of the new term.




  1. Five, (5), additional Members-at-Large.

7. A Parish representative to the Vicariate Pastoral Council. The Pastor and Council Chairperson shall appoint an existing Council member, if possible, to attend Vicariate Pastoral Council meetings and report back to the Council. If none are available, then an additional position will exist on the Council, which may be filled by appointment of the Pastor.




  1. In addition to all Council members, the School Principal and the Athletic Director, or designate, are requested to attend all Council meetings as non-voting participants.



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  1. Terms of membership on the Council


1. The priest(s) will serve for the duration of their archdiocesan appointment.


  1. The length of terms on the Council for Members-at-Large and/or Vicariate Representative shall be two, (2), years.




  1. Terms of newly selected members are to commence on the first day of July following their selection and continue until the last day of June of the appropriate year.




  1. Any Member-at-Large eligible for a second term may be considered in the normal selection process stated in Section V, “Selection of Members-at-Large”.




  1. Members-at-Large may not serve more than two consecutive terms. Members-at-Large may not be reseated to the Council until having been off the Council for one term.




  1. Chairperson, Vice-Chairperson and Secretary may not serve more than two years consecutively in the same position.


IV. RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE COUNCIL LEADERSHIP

A. The Pastor is the proper shepherd of the Parish entrusted to him, exercising pastoral care in the community entrusted to him under the authority of the diocesan Bishop in whose ministry of Christ he has been called to share; in accord with the norm of law he carries out for his community the duties of teaching, sanctifying and governing, with the cooperation of other presbyters of deacons and assistance of lay members of the Christian faithful.

While the Pastor collaborates with the Parish Pastoral Council in reaching decisions, it is fundamentally his responsibility to give final approval to the Council recommendations regarding plans and policies for the Parish. It is also his responsibility to oversee their implementation by the Pastoral Staff and other Parish groups.



  1. The Chairperson will work with the Pastor to facilitate the Council and assist Council members to actively collaborate for the Mission of the Parish. The Chairperson attends to the organizational aspects of the Council. The Chairperson needs to have an understanding of group process and have facilitating skills in order to fulfill this role with freedom and impartiality. The Chairperson, Vice-Chairperson and the Pastor will be known as the Agenda Committee and will set the agenda. The chairperson will appoint special committees and sub-committees as necessary, and preside at all Council meetings. The Chairperson will remind Council members and guests of time limits and procedural rules; and make certain everyone has or gives input to the issues addressed by the Council through the consensus method.



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V. SELECTION OF MEMBERS-AT-LARGE



  1. Following the announcement by the Council Vice-Chairperson, as outlined below, candidates for Members-at-Large, including those eligible for a second term, will submit their names or consent to having their names submitted for selection to the Council or to a Committee designated by the Council to conduct the selection.



  1. The prayerful selection for the Members-at-Large is to be held in the Church, at the end of an appointed weekend Mass, normally prior to June 1, preferably Pentecost Sunday, as determined by the Council.




  1. In the event that the exact number, or fewer, Parishioners than seats to be selected submit their names as candidates for the open Member-at-Large seats on the Council, they will, upon consensus of the Council, be accepted as Members-at-Large without a formal selection.




  1. Upon completion of the selection, all remaining names in the selection will be drawn with the name of the person and the order of the draw being recorded by the Parish Pastoral Council Vice-Chairperson; said names to be used in the event of a need to fill a vacancy. All people not selected will be invited and encouraged to join a Commission or committee of a Commission.


VI. ATTENDANCE


  1. Members of the Council attend all regular and special meetings of the Council. Any absent from two consecutive regular meetings, without prior notification to the chairperson of the Council, will be contacted by the Council Secretary about their intent to continue as a member of the Council.



  1. If a Council member is absent from three regular meetings in a term year, (July 1 - June 30), with or without notification, the Council officers will approach that member about his/her intention and ability to serve. If the Council cannot receive assurances pertaining to regular attendance, the Council will have the discretion to declare that a vacancy exists. Refer to Section VIII, “Terminating Membership”.



VII. VACANCIES


  1. Whenever a Member-at-Large vacancy exists, or the Council receives notice that a vacancy will exist in the near future, the Council Vice-Chairperson will contact the remaining candidates who were selected from the last selection, in order of their selection to determine if that person is still eligible and willing to fill the Member-at-Large vacancy. If so, that person will be invited and if that person accepts, then they are appointed by the Council to fill the remainder of the term on the Council.



    • If the time to be served is less than one year, it will not be counted as a term. If the time left is one year or more, but less than two years, it will count as a term.




  1. If none of the remaining candidates are eligible nor able to accept, then after notification in the Parish Lantern, as the first order of business at the next regular meeting, the Council will accept nominations to serve out the remaining portion of a term. A simple consensus of the Council will be required to designate the new Council member. No name is to be placed into nomination until the prospective nominees have declared a willingness to serve on the Council. If the vacancy concerns a Commission Spokesperson, the appropriate Commission is to designate the replacement.



VIII. TERMINATING MEMBERSHIP

Every effort should be made to resolve conflicts in a manner that shows respect and consideration for all concerned. In the unlikely event that such efforts meet with failure, the Vice-Chairperson will contact all members of the Council informing them of the possible removal of a member from the Council. All members of the Council are encouraged to make every effort to attend the Council meeting at which this is discussed. Following this communication, a consensus of the Council is required to remove any member or officer of the Council. The person is to be given an opportunity to be heard if they so desire, and personally invited to do so by the Chairperson.
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IX. LEADERSHIP OF THE COUNCIL





  1. The Council will select from among its Members-at-Large the following:

becoming Chairperson;

    • Vice-Chairperson;

    • Secretary.




  1. The officers of the Council are to be elected for holding office for one year and may succeed themselves for an additional one year, if such additional term does not conflict with any previously described general term limitations.




    • The Vice-Chairperson assumes the office of Chairperson when that individual vacates the position in mid-term, providing term limitations are met.


  1. MEETINGS OF THE COUNCIL

  1. Regular Council meetings are held eight, (8), times a year. Meetings are held during the summer only if deemed necessary by the Agenda Committee. Dates and times of all Council meetings are to be determined by the Agenda Committee.





  1. The agenda should facilitate the ongoing formation of the Council through, study/reflection/sharing, business and evaluation.




  1. The agenda for all meetings will be prepared in advance by the Chairperson working with the Agenda Committee. Any member of the Parish Community may request an item to be considered for placement on the agenda. Items to be considered for the agenda are to be given in writing to the Chairperson at least two weeks prior to the Council meeting. Every effort will be made to place all requested items on the agenda in a timely fashion.




  1. Special meetings of the Council may be called by the Pastor, the Chairperson, or by request of three members of the Council with at least two days notice to each Council member. The notice will include the time, place and purpose of the meeting. Such notice shall be posted for the Parish in general, either by notice in the Lantern, when time permits, or by posting on Parish property.




  1. Meetings of the Council are open to all parishioners. A period at each meeting will be designated by the chairperson for participation by parishioners. In an instance where particularly sensitive issues, (i.e. personal matters), will be discussed, the Council may choose to meet in closed session. A consensus of the Council members present, with agreement of the Pastor, may decide to move into closed session. Notice of all regular meetings shall be published in the Parish Lantern and/or announced publicly on the prior weekend at all the Masses.


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F. To assure adequate study, in-depth consideration or discussion, a decision should not normally be made at the same meeting at which the matter was presented. However, a consensus of the Council members present may decide to make an immediate decision on any matter.




  1. A simple majority of the members of the Council, in office at the time, will constitute a quorum for all meetings of the Parish Pastoral Council. No Council decisions will be made without a quorum present.




  1. The Council should discern by way of consensus. Members strive to reach substantial, though not necessarily unanimous, agreement on all matters of direction and policy. A consensus exists when there is a clear alternative to which most members can subscribe and if those who oppose it have had their chance to influence the discussion.




  1. A synopsis of the minutes of every Council meeting will be published in the Parish Lantern by the Secretary, and approved by the Chairperson prior to publication.




  1. The Pastor must ratify the decisions of the Parish Pastoral Council before they become final. He will not do so when Church law, the theology of the Church, or known policy of our Archbishop is violated. The Parish Pastoral Council by consensus may appeal the Pastor’s ruling to the Vicar.


- In the event that the Pastor is the Vicar, the appeal is to be made to the

regional bishop.


XI. SPECIAL COMMITTEES



The Chairperson of the Council may appoint special committees to serve and advise the council, subject to the approval of the Council. The membership of these Committees is not restricted to those who are members of the Council. The Chairperson of a special committee, upon the discretion of the Council Chairperson and approval of the Council, may be any member of the Parish.
(Section II)
SAINT THECLA PARISH COMMISIONS

Operational Procedures


I. NAME




The following Commissions will be operative on the Council and will adhere to Archdiocesan guidelines:


  • Worship Commission

  • Christian Service Commission

  • Stewardship Commission

  • Parish Life Commission

  • Christian Formation/Education Commission



II. FUNCTIONS
The Parish accomplishes its work in an organized and systematic way through effective working groups or Commissions. The Commissions will function within the guidelines prescribed by the Archdiocese of Detroit. The function of these Commissions are:


  1. To investigate the needs of their own area of concern in Parish life and to make recommendations to the Council on meeting these needs;




  1. To develop objectives flowing from the Parish Mission Statement and goals;




  1. To develop objectives and the programs resulting from the objectives and report the evaluation to the Council each spring;




  1. To propose a recommended budget to the Council;




  1. To choose a Chairperson and hold regular meetings using the consensus process for discussion and decisions;




  1. To choose a spokesperson to the Council;




  1. To submit a roster to the Council at the beginning of each term year;




  1. To propose policy for the Council’s consideration;




  1. To oversee the work of its committees;




  1. To review, once a year, the guidelines for that Commission in the Archdiocesan “Parish Pastoral Council Guidelines and Handbook”;




  1. To seek out, identify and obtain input from the Parish groups it represents;



III. ELIGIBILITY





  1. All confirmed and registered members of Saint Thecla Parish are eligible for membership on the Commissions.




  1. After a person has been introduced and informed about the role of the Commission, has made a commitment to participate in the regular working of the Commission, and following a consensus of the Commission, that person may be offered a place on that Commission by the Commission Chairperson. Any person who feels they have been denied a seat on any Commission, may bring their concerns to the Council for resolution.


IV. MEMBERSHIP ON THE COMMISSIONS



Each Commission will determine its own size to appropriately fulfill its responsibilities.
Members include:


  • The Pastor and/or his delegate;

  • The appropriate team/staff person pertaining to each Commission;

  • Eligible Parishioners who volunteer their interest, ability and experience. They may represent the various committees whose activity falls within the scope of the Commission.



V. LEADERSHIP


  1. Each Commission will select a Chairperson and a Council Spokesperson from among its members annually.




  1. The Chairperson must have served at least one prior year on the Commission.




  1. The Chairperson will appoint a Secretary to keep a record of the proceedings and prepare minutes for submission to the Council


VI. MEETINGS




Commissions will conduct meetings under the same operating norms as described for the Council. Frequency, time and place of meetings will be determined by each Commission.
(Section III)
AMENDMENTS
Any portion of these Operational Procedures may be modified or changed by a consensus of Parish Pastoral Council members present, presuming that a Quorum of the Council exists. Such action by the council will not take place at the same meeting at which the proposed amendment was presented, and will follow publication to the Parish membership of the intended amendment, through the Parish Lantern. Adequate opportunity for members of the Parish to be heard, pertaining to the proposed modifications or changes, will be given before a decision of the Council is made. Any Council member may sponsor a proposed modification or change to these Operational Procedures. The proposed modification or change is to be submitted in writing to the Chairperson or Secretary at least two weeks prior to the regular Council meeting.

(Section IV)


CONCLUSION
We do hereby unite to form a Council according to the spirit of Vatican II, and the “Parish Pastoral Council Guidelines and Handbook” of the Archdiocese of Detroit, recognizing and affirming our communion with the Vicar of Christ, Our Holy Father, the Pope; the Archbishop of our Archdiocese; and his representatives, our Pastor, on this 22nd day of April 1971, and completely revised February 23, 1993, and the final document approved on June 20, 1993.

(Section V)


NOTES AND APPENDIX
These guidelines are based on the “Parish Pastoral Council Guidelines and Handbook” of the Archdiocese of Detroit, dated November 1, 1991, and were adopted September 29, 1992, with consensus of St. Thecla Parish Pastoral Council.
Historical Notes: (2010)
These Pastoral Council and Commissions Operational Procedures were totally reviewed and amended on January 26, 2010, and the final document was approved by Saint Thecla Parish Pastoral Council on February 25, 2010.


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