One of the very interesting discoveries to come out of our Property and Community Review at the Parish Council, was the high level of loneliness that goes unseen - especially among young males. Fantastic work has been done by our own parish reps for this project lately, and what was profound, and worrying, is the level of isolation in our local communities. Perhaps it is a call to arms for us to really dig in and locate these anonymous people, and to look at the facilities we have in all our parish properties as a means of helping.
MINUTES OF THE MEETING OF THE DURHAM MARTYRS PARISH COUNCIL ST. JOSEPH’S CHURCH, 14TH JANUARY 2020
Present: Fr. Colm, Margaret Wallace (Chair), Maria Melia, Kathleen Murray, Katie Flood, Graham Donachie, Peter Thompson, Tom Hoban, Joanna Pallister, Erica Smith, John Lavery. By invitation – Cynthia Dunn
Apologies: Mike McNally, Fred Haywood, John Reilly-O’Donnell, John Thompson, Chris Parker, Tony Power
Margaret welcomed everyone and Fr. Colm opened the meeting with a prayer.
1. Actions from previous meeting
• GDPR Roll out of consent forms was planned for January 2020. To be followed up.
• Outreach – Betting Shop Premises. No progress has been made on this. Looks unlikely to proceed.
2. AGM Actions
• Election of Vice Chair Deferred until next meeting
3. Partnership Development Group – Update
• Property and Community Audit
Bishop Robert has suspended PDG activity on this. However as significant work had already been done in the Parish prior to this decision it was felt appropriate to consider this. Each Mass Centre representative presented comprehensive feedback on initial findings. This clearly indicated potential to develop existing outreach provision in partnership with other agencies and, to explore opportunities to use our buildings more effectively. In light of this it was felt appropriate for the three teams to continue the audit exercise within the parish with the aim of providing a report back to a special meeting of in June 2020 to review the findings. Fr.Colm and PC thanked Team leads for the extensive work carried out on this exercise to date.
• Proposals for events during 2020
Two events proposed:-
• Partnership Mass at Ushaw College (Mass only)
• Further open afternoons at 3 churches not previously included
4. Building Committee
Some work has been done on the figures for the 10-year forecast for maintenance etc, however these are dependent on the result of the Property Audit. There may be some opportunities to raise additional funds which will be explored further in coming months.
5. Liturgy Group
Review of Christmas arrangements to be carried out at February meeting. Fr.Colm reported positive feedback on Hall layout however there were some problems with ability for people to see the altar and readers and long rows of seating caused some difficulties. Group to consider how the new layout can be modified to overcome these issues. Reminder to include all Mass Centres when planning Stations of the Cross during Lent.
6. Homeless Project
Continues to be well supported by Volunteers. Night Shelter operating between now and end of February when temperatures fall to 0 degrees. Weekly health care support sessions have been added to night shelter provision.
7. Youth Update
Katie provided a comprehensive update of youth group activity and of her work in parish schools . Some of our young people will be attending the Transcend retreat in February.
8. St. Godric’s Steering Group
Next meeting Wednesday 15th January. Currently working on application to Heritage Lottery Fund for repairs to church.
9. Group Publicity in Bulletin
Joanna reported that there is sometimes a blank back page in the bulletin. This can be utilised by any parish groups wishing to advertise. Information should be submitted to Marjorie who will insert it when space if available.
The briefing note will be read out over the weekend of 25th January
St Joseph’s 5.00 Vigil Mass – Joanna
St. Godric’s 9.00 Mass – Tom
St. Joseph’s 11.00 Mass – John Thompson
12. Date of Next Meeting 10th March 2020