The Council met in the Church house on Sunday 21st October to elect new Office Bearers. For the past two years Fr. Jim, the Parish Priest, has been chairing meetings as well as being the President. This was to enable him, as a new pastor to the community, to get a proper feel for the running of the Parish Pastoral Council and its members, who are elected for a three year period.
After a time of prayer and reflection on the responsibilities of the roles of office in the Council, a vote was taken and Mr David Kiltie was elected Chairperson, Mrs Ellen Hawkes Vice Chairperson and Mrs Eileen Hamilton Secretary. The office bearers hold office for a 12 months period after which the three year service of the current members comes to an end and new elections to the Council are held involving the whole parish.
Other items discussed were : the parish response to the theme of the forthcoming Diocesan Pastoral Council meeting on 24th November which will investigate ways of sustaining the development of children who have received the sacraments of Initiation i.e. Baptism, Holy Communion and Confirmation, the faith sharing groups for Advent, which this year will reflect on subjects from the papal letter "The Start of the New Millennium" and the Council's annual retreat which will be held in "Lincluden", Skelmorlie on 16th -18th November. The retreat begins on Friday evening and finishes after lunch on the Sunday and the theme this year will be centred on spirituality. Lincluden is an excellent centre for retreat as the house is large and comfortable and has ample cooking and meeting facilities which allow Council members to get to know one another in a very informal setting, which includes cooking and sitting down to meals together with their pastor.
The Parish Pastoral Council of Our Lady & St. Cuthbert's, Maybole met on Sunday evening of June 10th 2001. Present were Jim McDermott, Fr. Jim Hayes , Marian Davidson, Robert Mackie, Elizabeth Meek, Eileen Hamilton, David Kiltie, Ellen Hawkes. Apologies were received from Dennis McCaffery and Wilma Valdrighi
The meeting began with a reading of Romans 12, an introduction by David and a group discussion which focused on the need for discernment of direction when taking decisions about family, lifestyle, parish etc. It was agreed that all such decisions require prayer, reflection and consultation with others and should be based on love.
Trade Craft articles can be obtained from Rev Julia Mason, of St. Oswald's, and had proved popular with parishioners but for some time there had been no stall. It was agreed to restore a regular sale of articles from Trade Craft perhaps once a month. Th coffee and tea on sale in the hall is Trade Craft.
Broken windows in the Church due to vandalism is as great a problem as ever and bills for glass and labour are very high. Perspex would last longer but is more costly. If voluntary labour could be found the cost of perspex may be affordable. The Finance Committee will be asked to look into the cost of perspex and to try to obtain voluntary labour.
Celebration of Confirmation and First Holy Communion in May went very well. The Bishop was unable to attend as he had accepted an invitation to Dumfries for that day.
The appointment of a New Bishop due to Bishop's Taylor submitting notice of his retirement will be a consultative process. The Galloway Newsletter for May contained details for anyone wishing to be part of the consultation process to nominate candidates for consideration.
A Parish Pilgrimage to Durham Cathedral has been arranged for 28th July. Names are still being sought before ordering bus. The pilgrimage is open to non- parishioners. Visitors to the parish and anyone interested in the town are welcome. The Prayer Group members will be informed at the weekly meeting on Tuesday next as several of them attended last year's pilgrimage to Lindesfarne
The Finance Committee has organised a BBQ for 13th July in the Church.grounds. A Scavenger Hunt is being organised by Dennis beforehand and music will be on hand.
A good return from Gift Aid was received from the Inland Revenue. Thanks were expressed to Dennis for his ministry of looking after collections so well.
Keeping Children Safe Borderline which books the hall regularly have forwarded their Policy and this will be sent to the Diocesan Co-ordinator for review. Fr. Jim will retain a copy for parish files. Some questions were raised with regard to the referral forms for Church members who work with children and vulnerable adults. The Diocesan Co-ordinator will be asked to consider them.
Diocesan Pastoral Council. The subject of the June Council had been different methods of prayer. Four workshops, "Praying the Mass", "Creative Prayer" "Praying the Scriptures" and "Lay Led Prayer" had been attended by some of the Council members. It was agreed that the Parich Retreat in November should focus on prayer and that the PPC should seek to establish a "school of prayer" in the parish.
Maybole Community News We have received a request from the Maybole Community Development Group for articles. It was agreed that our parish pilgrimage to Durham would be newsworthy.
A meeting of the Parish Pastoral Council of Our Lady & St. Cuthbert's, Maybole took place March 11th 2001 in the parish house. Parish Pastoral Council members Dennis McCaffery, Jim McDermott, Eileen Hamilton, David Kiltie, Fr. Jim, Wilma Valdrighi, Marian Davidson, Elizabeth Meek and Ellen Hawkes met for coffee at 6.45pm and the meeting started around 7pm with a reflection and sharing. Fr. Jim spoke for a few minutes on the book "She said 'Yes'" (about the massacre of schoolchildren) and the group shared on what it is that makes up people's experience of the reality of Jesus.
The recent retreat held for members at Skelmorlie in Largs was reviewed and it was agreed that the experience had been a good one. Lessons about teamwork, communication and commitment were learned and will be put into practice. The venue was considered to be excellent as it allowed for complete privacy and a good deal of socialising in preparing and celebrating meals together. The next retreat dates (16 -18 November) were diarised by members.
The next election of office bearers will be held in September 2001. The PPC can co-opt people as the need arises but in the meantime the decision to leave the total membership at 10 stands.
Some discussion took place about building on our ties with our primary school, St. Cuthbert's. On 20th May eight children will be confirmed and receive First Holy Communion. Bishop Taylor will attend if he is able. It was agreed to re-issue bulletins to the school to connect with parents who never attend church.
On 5th May Bishop Taylor is 75 and will be sending mandatory letter of resignation to the Holy See in Rome. Prayers are asked to see the way forward in this interim period and that the right man will be chosen to replace Bishop Taylor at the appropriate time. Bishop Taylor is currently in Columbia where he is visiting poor communities on behalf of the Catholic Church's Commission for Justice and Peace.
It was agreed to have a parish pilgrimage to Durham Cathedral, where St. Cuthbert is buried on June 2nd 2001. Last year's parish pilgrimage to Lindesfarne and Melrose proved an enormous success and several enquiries have been made about the next one.
Dennis, the chair of the Finance Committee, reported 61 people now signed up for Gift Aid, which represents a 100% increase in numbers from previous years. Congratulations were extended to the Finance Committee. Collection bags have now been found and will be used from next Sunday. The successful quiz night held on Wednesday 7th March raised around £250 for parish funds. The hall was packed and it was great to see so many people of all ages and from other churches (or none) participating. Mrs Jean Dunn's team was again the winner. The Committee still await quotes for roof and guttering repairs needed so fund raising goes on. The next event organised is the 150 Club Dance which will be held in the Speakers' Club on Friday March 30th , tickets £2 for members and £6.50 for guests. This includes an excellent buffet and dancing to Gerry Murphy's popular band "Tequila".
The Rite of Christian Initiation of adults (RCIA), consists of a period of informal discussions and faith sharing with people interested in becoming a Catholic in the Roman Catholic tradition. The group begins to meet in August each year. Anyone interested should have a chat with a Church member and give Fr. Jim a call on 882145 or the co-ordinator, Jim McDermott, on 882592. They would be happy to hear from you. The team will meet shortly to plan the course.
On 17th March at St. Paul's in Ayr, the diocese has organised a day's training for Eucharistic Ministers. Fr. Jim, Marian, Eileen, Jim and Ellen will definitely be going along and other Eucharistic ministers may join us. Information will be passed to all Ministers of the Eucharist after the training is completed.
Ecumenical Lenten Small Groups began last Monday, the first week in Lent and will continue for five weeks. The groups are organised by Maybole Council of Churches and every church in the town is taking part. More information can be obtained from any of the town's ministers.