This past weekend we were blessed with the wonderful opportunity to commemorate the 50thanniversary of the 1968 fire from which a community emerged to regroup, rebuild, and resume their faith-filled lives. A sincere and abundant thank-you to Karen Thompson and all the people she worked with who made the remembering possible and “blazing forward” a real possibility. With the completion of our review of the parish constitution and bylaws this weekend, we have a clear pathway through which the Holy Spirit will inspire us on Pentecost and beyond.
OF THE CHURCH OF ST. MATTHEW
SAINT PAUL, MINNESOTA
(continued from Part 3: Constitution and Bylaws of the Church of Saint Matthew)
Submitting Agenda Items
Parishioners are welcome to submit items through Council members, committees, or task force. Agenda items originating by parish members must come to the Parish Council via a Parish Council member, committee, or a task force. The process begins by the preparation of a written proposal describing the issue(s) and a recommendation for action and submitting it to the appropriate committee or task force for action. Agenda items that do not fall under the purview of a committee or task force may be submitted to a Parish Council member. The submitted proposal must clearly indicate the reason for bringing the proposal to the Council and what action is being asked of the Parish Council. If a plan is offered, the proposal should indicate how the plan is aligned with the parish mission and vision and the resources needed to implement it. If the parishioner submitting the agenda item through this process has a direct stake by virtue of some personal or professional interest or benefit in seeing that the proposal is implemented, the parishioner must describe in some detail how he or she benefits from the proposal. Any conflict of interest must be explored before the issue is placed on the agenda.
The Council member or task force must submit the proposal to the Facilitator. If a proposal submitted to the Council lies within the scope and authority of a committee task force, or the job description of a parish employee or a volunteer, the proposal may be referred to that body/person for consideration prior to or in lieu of being placed on the Parish Council agenda. The Facilitator will notify the submitting party.
Decision Making Process
The Parish Council shall use the consensus decision making process
“Through prayer and listening, the Parish Council seeks to discover the will of the Holy Spirit for our community; and in respectful prayerful listening and dialogue arrive at a consensus decision.”
In the consensus process, only proposals which intend to accomplish the common purpose and mission of the parish are considered. The purpose of the discussion is to refine the proposal in order to make it the best decision for the group. Council members who do not agree with a proposal are responsible for expressing their concerns. Concerns are raised and resolved, sometimes one by one, until all voices are heard. No decisions proceed unless all members in attendance are in agreement or those not in agreement stand aside and allow the decision to be made. Once the Council reaches a decision all members of the Parish Council must publicly support the decision of the
Council. While unanimity is not the goal, unity of purpose is, insofar as the decision reached by the Council represents the collective wisdom for the common good of the entire parish.
Once a decision is reached a plan for implementing the decision will be formulated with a projected review date assigned.
ARTICLE VI: STANDING COMMITTEES AND TASK FORCES
The Parish Pastoral Council shall establish standing committees to further the Parish’s mission and priorities. The priorities are developed through a process that included the Council consulting with its standing committees, task forces and affinity organizations. The Council shall review its priorities annually and make revisions as needed.
The committees are accountable to the Council and therefore need to keep the Council informed of their activities. Therefore, committees will submit written, draft minutes of their meetings to the Council within two weeks of their meetings. The Council may establish Task Forces for specified and/or limited purposes. Such Task Forces will also submit written, draft minutes of their meetings to the Council within two weeks of their meeting.
The preferred method of submitting Committee or Task Force minutes is to do so electronically via the Council’s e-mail address () Minutes may be mailed to or dropped off at the Parish Center if they are unable to be submitted electronically.
The following are standing committees of the Parish:
- Education Advisory Board, which establishes policy for Saint Matthew’s educational programs.
- Finance Council, which prepares the Parish budget, monitors Parish expenditures and provides regular financial reports to the Parish Council.
- Liturgy Committee, which directs the liturgical life of the Parish.
- Parish Enrichment Committee, which advances the education and formation of the parish community.
- Stewardship Committee, which is responsible to cultivate the time and talent and monetary resources of the parish.
The Parish Council may appoint additional standing committees as the need arises.
The Parish Community is encouraged to participate in the work of the Committees and Task-Forces.
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