Magherafelt Parish Pastoral Council (MPPC)

Parish Pastoral Council Update - September 2014

One Body One Mission

Now almost 18 months into its mission, the Parish Pastoral Council have compiled

an update on their activities since their inauguration in April 2013.


Please find below a summary of their activities and further down you can find

some more background to the activities.





April 2013

New Pastoral Council commissioned

May 2013

Parish Survey conducted at Masses

June - Sept 2013

Survey results analysed and disseminated. New volunteer details passed to various parish agencies, and two key areas of focus identified, i.e. Youth Development and Faith Development. Council divided into two corresponding sub-committees

October 2013

Two sub-groups put forward their proposed strategic plans

Volunteer Mass held

November 2013

Lectio Divino held over 4 weeks

Parish website updated with increased Faith Development material

December 2013

Parish Christmas Card design and details agreed upon: cards distributed

February 2014

Showing of the Catholicism films commences – this will continue for 10 weeks

5 new readers commissioned as a result of offers to volunteer made in parish survey

March 2014

Baptismal team undergo training

April 2014

Farewell function held for seminarian

May 2014

Baptismal team now fully active within parish

June 2014

Confirmation programme agreed upon

Cemetery Sunday - blessing of small memorial to unbaptised children buried at Milltown

July 2014

Parish Pilgrimage to Mass-rock near Dungiven



 insurance-leads-details-300x300 The Details behind the Summary




Black font =  decisions etc. at Council meetings

Blue font =  follow-up work etc.

April 2013

1st Meeting of Pastoral Council


Roisin Clayton elected Chairperson, Katrina Kelly  as Vice-Chair, Aidan  McGuckin as Secretary and Margaret Gates as Assistant Secretary


Commissioning Service at Saturday Vigil Mass, officially  appointing new  Pastoral Council for 3 year term



May 2103

2nd meeting of Council


Decision approved to consult with parishioners by means of a survey, in order to help develop a strategic plan for 2013-16.


All existing wok from previous Council to be continued and taken forward as part of current Council’s strategic plan


Survey conducted at Masses in both Castledawson and Magherafelt over two weekends


Extra meeting held to review survey  returns  re offers  for Volunteering in the parish


Volunteer database prepared as a consequence



June 2013

3rd Meeting of Council


Names of new volunteers to be passed to various organisations in the parish in which they had expressed interest


Council members use completed database to make contact with parishioners who had offered to volunteer


Additional meeting held to take further forward the offers on Volunteering


Survey responses are analysed


Three members of Council meet with Pastoral Area Resource Team



Official Summer Recess

Work continues over summer period on analysis of Survey responses



Sept 2013

4th Meeting of Council


Members updated on the details of the meeting with Pastoral Resource Team


The results of the survey disseminated - it is agreed that forward focus of the Council would be in the two areas of ‘Youth’ and ‘Faith Development’.


Council divided into two sub-groups to tackle these separate areas



Oct 2013

5th Meeting of  Council


Vice Chair resigns as she has re-located for work reasons. M Devlin appointed as new Vice -Chair


Damien Quigley, new Seminarian attached to the parish, introduced. Damien will be with us until April 2014


Youth Team Update:

Proposed strategic plans:

  •          Establishment of Parish Youth Council-open to young people from outside parish
  •          The strategic aims - to ‘Engage, Empower and Energise’
  •          Links with Dromantine and Michaela Foundation discussed
  •          Youth Council members to be inducted at Mass


Faith Development team update:

Proposed  strategic plan

  •          Adult education events to be organised
  •          Welcome Mass for all new parishioners within past 5 years
  •          Volunteer Mass to be held on 22 October


Letters to be sent  to parish organisations  to ascertain positions regarding the volunteers who had come forward as result of the survey


Members of Faith Devel Sub-comm meet further to develop plan in this area. This results in plan to hold  'Lectio Divina' during Advent


Volunteer Mass takes place as planned



November 2013

6th Meeting of Council


Responses  from parish organisations shared re-update on number of volunteers they have gained from parish survey and extent to which these now active in their organsiation


Update from Youth team: 

  •          Outline of detailed plans for set-up of Parish Youth Council- plans to meet with R.E. teachers at 4 local schools
  •          Also plans to tap into the spirit of Dromantine and ask for help from Fr Kevin (SMA, Dromantine). 


Update from Faith Development team:

On strategic plan – 3 main proposals emerging

  •          Using parish website as a resource for prayer - the Stations of the Cross have been added and the Mysteries of the Rosary including the Mysteries of Light etc.
  •          Lectio Divino - engaging with the word of God through scripture and to be offered on 4 consecutive Thursday nights starting on the 21 November.
  •          Catholicism’ - series of films on Catholicism by Fr Robert Barron, and to offered for 10 weeks leading up to Holy Week.  A discussion would follow each film


Members of Faith Devel Sub-comm attend pre-view of ‘Catholicism’ DVD.


Proposed Christmas card design circulated to Council members for approval/comment



December 2013

7th Meeting of Council


Baptismal team membership has dropped to 11


Council discusses the Vatican survey on the Parish website


Youth Team Update:

  •          Progress is ongoing re set up of Youth Council. Hoped that this will be formed March/April


Faith Development Update:

  •          Lectio Divino was reviewed
  •          Agreed that films of ‘Catholicism’ by Fr Robert Barron be shown over the 10 weeks leading up to Holy Week. Venue to be confirmed


Arrangements re distribution of Christmas cards agreed upon



January 2014

8th Meeting of Council


Baptismal Team now has a complement of 12 team members


It was noted that some parishioners had not received a Christmas card. This highlighted fact that new parishioners may not be registered at Parish Office– a notice will be placed in the bulletin inviting them to do so.


A Member of the Council advised that they wish to stand down for 2014 year due to the number of other volunteer commitments they currently have.


Faith Development team update:

  •          Catholicism film will be run in Holy Family Primary School over ten consecutive Wednesdays commencing 5th February.
  •          It was agreed to open this up to whole PART area – posters to be sent to the other parishes


Youth team update:

  •          Re-Michaela Foundation -there is already a group in Maghera and felt that Magherafelt is to close for another group. However they would be interested in perhaps doing something in August with us.



February 2014

9th Meeting of Council


Agreed that summary of Council’s work to date be provided to Parishioners , as part of the Council’s desire for transparency


Faith Development team update:

  •          Approx.  55 people attended  first night’s showing of the Catholicism Film
  •           Discussion followed on the possibilities of offering a pilgrimage to parishioners


Baptismal Team Update

  •          training for current team members scheduled for 11th March. 
  •          Those who had offered themselves as ‘general’ volunteers during parish survey to be invited to this training on a no obligation basis.


5 new Readers have been commissioned as a result of the request for volunteers, as well as 14 new Eucharistic Ministers. 19 potential Alter Servers also in training at this time.


A new lectern  for the book of the  Gospel has been made from old altar rails, and placed on Our Lady’s altar



Mar 14




Apr 14

11TH Meeting of Council


Farewell function arranged for seminarian, Damien


Youth Team Update:

For various reasons, the proposed Youth Council has not developed through schools as had been hoped. Efforts will now  be re-directed to make this happen through the parish


Faith Development Team Update:

Catholicism films still continue to have steady audience.


Baptismal team Update:

Baptismal team underwent training in March


Presence of webcams in sanctuary area noted- all relevant parties informed



May 14

12TH Meeting of Council


Request from a choir to fundraise at Magherafelt Masses was considered and rejected. Instead decided to offer Parish Centre free of charge as a venue for a fundraising performance


Difficulties of sustaining music in the parish discussed – to be looked into more fully next year


Faith Development Team update:

Catholicism films now completed – very good attendance. Some plans for next year discussed


Baptismal Team Update:

Team have been active undertaking visits


R Tohill to be co-opted onto the Council to replace former Vice-Chair who re-located



June 14

13TH Meeting of Council


The choir fundraiser will be held in September


Youth Team Update:

Strategic plan revised to:

Extend FOOP model to 11-14 age group. This will be achieved by formation of a Confirmation programme which Magherafelt will pioneer with active support from the Armagh Youth Council and MPPC.Sub-committee to meet further on this

Also discussed the Gift Programme which is another confirmation programme. Member of Council to look into this further and report in Sept/Oct 14


Faith Development Team update:

Discussed some possible programmes for next year. No decisions reached


Discussed possible pilgrimage options – two Council members to take this forward (This ultimately led to the pilgrimage to the Mass rock  at Dungiven in July)


Cemetery Sunday upcoming – it was noted that a new little monument for all the unbaptised babies buried in Milltown will be blessed at that ceremony


The new Parish Pastoral Council began its work in April 2013.  

The new membership of the Pastoral Council is as follows:

Mrs Roisin Clayton (Chair),

Ms Katrina Kelly (Vice-Chair),

Mr Aidan McGuckin (Secretary), 

Mrs Margaret Gates (Asst Secretary),

Fr Gates (President),

Mr Brian O'Neill,

Ms Marie Devlin,

Ms Margaret Mullan,

Fr McAnerney, 

Mrs Una McCorry,

Mr Joe McCrystal,

Mr Emmet McCluskey,

Mr Martin Lynch, 

Sr Caitriona Gore,

Mrs Roisin Scullion. 






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