Pastoral Council The parish Pastoral Council is a consultative body mandated by diocesan statute. Each parish must have a pastoral council which is intimately involved in short and long range planning for the future of the parish. Its members advise the pastor and parish staff on major issues that affect the life of the parish as a whole. The pastoral council helps to set the tone of the parish, advises the pastor on strategic planning and assists in setting goals and objectives. The pastoral council assists the pastor and pastoral staff in setting the vision and direction for the parish. Ideally each member is also associated with one of the parish committees. Details regarding terms of office, selection and appointment to the pastoral council are contained in the statutes of the pastoral council. Periodically, new appointments are made and any parishioner may make known his or her desire to be appointed to this council or other parishioners may nominate members for appointment.
The Parish Pastoral Council in the Diocese of Pittsburgh The document Lay Ministries: Handbook for Parishes and Institutions was promulgated by Bishop Donald W. Wuerl on December 8, 1994. Therein is found the following description of the work of the members of Parish Pastoral Councils:
1. Actively seek information from the pastor, parish staff, and the parish at large regarding the pastoral needs of the parish community.
2. Assist in developing or reviewing the parish mission statement
3. Advise the pastor in integrating the parish's goals and priorities into and ongoing pastoral plan
4. Recommend flexible strategies which support the parish's goals and priorities
5. Contribute to the evaluation of progress in achieving parish's pastoral plan.
In addition, the following criteria for membership on the Parish Pastoral Council are given:
1. Fully initiated Catholics (having received the Sacraments of Baptism, Confirmation and Eucharist) who are registered and active in parish life and are in good standing with the Church
2. Persons with an understanding of and commitment to the Church as expressed in the documents of the Second Vatican Council
3. Committed to prayer, Gospel values, and growth in personal holiness
4. Knowledgeable about the life and teachings of Jesus, the mission of the Church, and the distinctive characteristics of the parish, its ministries and its people
5. Skilled in group process, interpersonal communication and collaboration
6. Willing to participate in on-going
Current Members of Pastoral Council
Joan Franceschi, Lea Grondziowski, Billy Hartung, Peggy Hayden, Pat James, Mary Lou Van der Maelen, and Elaine Wiethorn