The Catholic Parish of
Saint John Henry Newman

 Covering most of East Leeds

PPC Minutes 12th Nov 2015

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Parish Pastoral Council for Blessed John Henry Newman 
12th November 2015 

Meeting was chaired by Sheelagh Pickles (The Chair). 
The meeting started with a Prayer. 

Apologies from Sr. Nora, Fr Emmanuel, Angela des Rosier, Philip Dyson and Josephine Abbey Philip

Home/School/Parish John Hutchinson HeadTeacher St Theresa’s Primary School

John Hutchinson attended the meeting in place of Damian Heaney who has stepped down from the Governing body at St Theresa’s. The purpose of someone attending the meeting from the schools is to create a better link between Home/School / Parish.
Corpus Christi, St Nicholas, Our Lady of Good Council & St Theresa’s Head Teachers meet regularly and these schools are feeder schools into Corpus Christi College. The next meeting is the 3rd December.

All wish to engage school families into parish life.

Sacrament preparation for the First Holy Communion is done in Corpus Christi Primary School where lay people prepare the children after school whereas in St Theresa’s School, the main preparation is done by the teachers in school This shows one parish with different approaches.

Fr G visits St Theresa’s school each week which is a very important link to the school.

John was advised that each of our churches has a good Children’s Liturgy each Sunday.

Patrick Bradley gave a brief outline of what The Youth & Family Meeting is doing and it was decided that maybe the school representative should attend these meetings as both seem to want the same things for the family and the church.
Patrick to let John have the next of the next meeting when arranged which is hoped to be before Christmas.

Sheelagh Pickles said she would like to see an ALPHA Course in our school.

John left the meeting at 7.35pm to return to school to help supervise the school disco.

AGM Feedback

  • John Hutchinson fed back to the governors after his attendance to the AGM that we are a very lively parish.
  • Tony Pickles talk on the refugees situation resulted in the collection of clothing and essential items in the Leeds 15 area. This was arranged with the help of Karen Gray from Connecting Crossgates and by the efforts of Mr Hutchinson who coordinated donations from all the primary schools in the area.
  • The AGM was poorly attended. We don’t seem to be able to engage people and there is no interest.
  • Some others churches have an open meeting in church.
  • Fr Paul told the meeting that to get a message to all the people the same weekend from himself would mean he attended every Mass to speak not just issue a leaflet as people don’t read them or take it away.
  • Invite the Franciscan Sisters to next PPC meeting to get to know what they are doing within the Corpus Christi area of the parish. Corpus Christi College has a Chaplain. Schools could become a separate community/parish within the whole Parish.
  • Corpus Christi College & St Theresa’s primary schools both have Chapels.
  • Links could be made between the schools and the older generation in the parish as prayer partners.
  • It has taken best part of the year to have the priest going into the schools. This has to be fitted into the school time table.
  • Altar servers are on the increase across the parish. Corpus Christi needs someone to train the children.
  • There are young people helping to welcome people at St Gregory’s which is lovely and should be encouraged across the parish. Some people are reluctant to let others help in fear of losing “their job” while others are reluctant to offer help because they think it’s someone else’s job!
  • Fr Paul reminded the PPC we are doing a lot in the parish compared to others. We just need to build on this.
  • Volunteers don’t come forward. How long can we ask?
  • What can the PPC as a “Pastoral Parish Council” do for the parish across the whole of the parish to encourage & engage people to come forward?
  • We should have a Pastoral Vision as a PPC group.
  • Survey of children at all schools and a separate survey for parents of what people need from the church. Sean asked to follow this up and he will go along to the Family & Youth meeting. Date to be arranged.
  • A survey also for the people of the parish to see what they want out of the church and parish.
  • FHC visiting successful very warmly received. Needs to be done earlier in 2016.

Youth & Family Ministry Update: Patrick Bradley 

  • Advent Mass inviting the children for both primary schools
  • Confessions in St Theresa’s school for all above year 4
  • Last meeting poorly attended. Fr Emmanuel gave the group something to think about. To have a separate Mass for children while parents’ Mass is happening.
  • Encourage young people to read at Mass also the choirs to encourage them to join in the singing.

 Proclaim 15 – Sheelagh Pickles 

  • 4 meetings have taken place since July about what has gone on.
    Website full of material to help.
  • 3 meeting over 3 weeks within the parish have taken place with about 30 people attending each week.
  • Now time for the parish to decide on how to move forward as a welcoming parish.
  • What to do next.
  • There are 11 workshops available which people from our parish commented that we are already doing many of the activities outlined
  • We need to welcome and outreach more by building on what we do.
  • Welcoming in not just those people on the door but we should be more aware of who is around us and speaking to people in church.
  • Parish Family Group for a future meeting to discuss.

 Safeguarding – Fr Paul 

Fr Paul told the PPC that we had 2 safeguarding meetings in general to open people’s minds. These were attended by about 50% of the people involved in ministries in the parish
Now available - online training which people will be invited to do and then a certificate will be issued at the end of the course.

Leeds Citizens

Anne Tracy was due to attend the meeting but unfortunately she has had an accident and was unable to attend.
A leaflet was handed out at all Masses last weekend explaining more about Leeds Citizens. Meeting on the 15th November which it is hoped more will attend.

Dementia Meeting Feedback

Sheila Kennedy & Moira Wager attended a meeting at Immaculate Heart in Moortown. The Speaker gave details of Dementia and how this affects the person and their family. A lot is going on the Leeds 17 area. The meeting was very informative. Immaculate Heart has a Mass on the last Thursday of the month for Dementia sufferers and their families and the elderly. Music is played and children entertained those who were present.
A handout has been given to the PPC members present - Sheila & Moira to condense the handout and forward it to the Editor of the magazine for the next issue.
Various leaflets relating to dementia will be available in the parish office in due course.
On the Diocesan website there is something on how we can become a Dementia friendly parish - Sheila to follow this up.

PPC Elections

Members stand for a period of 3 years and then have to step down. If this is their first term they are allowed to stand for re election if they wish. The 3 members to step down this time are Patrick Bradley, Sheila Kennedy and Angela de Rosier. Patrick has said will not be standing for re election. Sheila is willing to stand for re-election if nobody else stands. Angela needs to be asked if she wishes to stand for re-election. It is hoped that younger adults will come forward to stand for election to the Parish Council.
Nominees are to be requested before Christmas with elections to take place early January.
2 additional places on the PPC have been created for young persons under the age of 25 years old. Nominations are required and elections will take place at the same time as the elections for the other members.

Year of Mercy – What can we do as a parish?

This is simply not just putting more confessions on.
This is to be discussed at the Bishop’s meeting in the next few weeks. Following the meeting more thought to be put to this matter for the next meeting.


Parishioner raised a concern about some inappropriate Christmas cards which are in a shop,’ Scribbler’ in Leeds city centre. Deacon Sean to investigate but felt probably best not to give the shop undue publicity.

Finance & Property

All Parish Priests received a letter from the new Chief Operating Officer of the Diocese advising them that the Diocese has a debt of £12m with £1m of this is from the Parishes.
As a Parish we could be in debt to £15k at the end of this financial year ending 31st March 2016. The Finance & Property Committees are looking at ways of turning this round. 3 people went to meet the C.O.O. to explain what we as a parish are doing to overcome this.
Electric work is necessary spending and the funds are coming from our Diocesan account.
Groups which use the Parish Centre – other than for specific parish functions - are to be asked to look at paying to cover the cost of lighting and heating.

The meeting closed with a prayer at 9.15pm

Next Meeting
21st January 2016 7.00pm

Published Wed 25th Nov 2015 11:39:02
Last Modified on Wed 25th Nov 2015 11:53:34

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