Minutes of St Laurence’s Parish Forum : 10 October 2011
The meeting began at 8pm with Jim O'Sullivan in the chair and 22
Fr. Pat Cleary opened the meeting with prayer.
Apologies were received from Mary Watkins, Rev Geoff and Pat Cook, Linda McIntyre, Margaret Plumb.
Minutes of Previous Meeting
The Minutes were displayed on the Narthex boards and on the Website. They were considered to be right.
The Facilitation Group and a small group have met to discuss and put together a programme for Advent.
- There will be a visit to St Joseph’s church St Neots on 27th November to see a painting by James Gillick of the Nativity. Fr. Pat will lead this visit and will explain how to look at a picture before leading a time of reflection and prayer.
- There will be house Masses on the evenings of Mondays 28th November, 12th and 19th December.
- In addition there will be 2 sessions of Faith sharing, one in the day time and one in the evening to give the best opportunity of attending one. Fr. Pat may lead this with others helping.
- There will be 2 sessions of interactive meditation around Christmas story again one in the day time and one in the evening and led by Jenny Martin and Lyn Dekker.
- Simple Supper − parish room − 10th December
Paul Simmons asked that Fr. Pat gives this programme a good kick off on the Feast of Christ the King but also with attention being drawn to the programme earlier so that people can plan which activities they wish to join.
Paul also asked Fr. Pat if he would offer special bidding prayers for the parish during this special Parish Year.
Sandra Hobson also told the Forum about the Life in the Spirit programme which will run from 27th October at St. Laurence’ and OLEM.
It was also hoped that the school would be involved in these new Parish initiatives although it was acknowledged that towards the end of term schools are very busy.
Tony Brotchie asked that as part of the neighbourhood part of the Parish Year Plan that we should contribute more to the Food Bank. Fr. Pat said that we contribute again on the weekend of 26th/27th November, that the Bank knows to come to St. Laurence’s at any time they need and that the spare food from the Harvest would go to the bank.
- New Missal is on order and will have all the new translations. This officially starts the 1st Sunday in Advent.
- 9.30 Sunday Mass: Fr. Pat regrets the move from the school due to the ongoing building work. He feels that this particular Mass is so much more powerful when held in the round at school and looks forward to the day they can return.
- Tony Brotchie said that parking is a big problem with 9.30 and 11 o’clock Masses both in the church.
- Bidding Prayers are going well though it was commented that it would be nice for the people to lead these prayers at 11 o’clock Mass. Fr. Pat said he was unaware that Bidding Prayers should always be done by the Deacon.
- Music: Paul Simmons asked if we would have to change our music as he so enjoyed the 11 o’clock Mass. Fr. Pat said that he felt that when the words were sung it was less important and that we should wait for good new music to come this way. It was noted that OLEM were using new music but Richard Birkett said that this was plainsong type music which was not right for this church.
- Replacement Mass Books: Stephen Warde asked if they were going to be provided and it was felt that many people find them helpful.
- Personal Missals will be available for purchase in due course.
- Dominicans: the Provincial of the Dominicans feels they should be more pastorally concerned so there will be a Polish priest at OLEM and Fr. Bob Eccles OP will come to help us at St. Laurence.
- North Cambridge Council of Churches: Deacon Geoff and Fr Pat attend and Fr Pat thought it might be good to have the Vicar of St. Andrews to preach at Christian Unity.
- Taize Group has been meeting for 20 years. Now very small. Need for publicity in parish and around local churches.
- The recent bequest gives this parish financial security. The Diocese has it and it is available for other parishes but it is guaranteed that it can be released for our need at any time.
- Current Parish expenditure: the Parish has 2 projects costing up to 40,000 pounds the house roof needs felt replacement and while this is being done solar panels must be considered. Sr. Pat is very pleased about this as it is also good publicity that the church is concerned with its role as good steward. She felt we should be putting our money to good use. In addition the roof insulation will be improved and junk removed from the attic.
- Resurfacing the car park is in the pipe line. Sheffield Bike stands have been put beside the church as well as outside lighting.
- The office and sacristy will be done this year.
- Blackout blinds for the parish room.
- Hand rails for the steps to the lawn area.
- TV monitors for the office so that it can be seen who is outside.
- Sr. Pat asked that it should be considered that a small amount of our capital should go to “shared interest” a scheme whereby money is loaned to development projects at interest.
- Tony Brotchie said the gas heaters need servicing.
- Simple Supper − 10th December.
- St. Laurence’s Day was a nice event.
- St. Cecilia’s Day − musicians have been invited to a party in the presbytery.
- Confirmation − new programme to start this Saturday.
- First Communion − the group is nice and large with a good team and good co-ordination with the school.
- Children’s Liturgy is in need of more helpers − training is given.
- Diocesan Catechist would run a course for those who would help prepare parents for Baptism.
Buildings and grounds
Building work is going ahead. It is very encouraging that the school is extending.
There was discussion about what carries on while we have no Bishop. The Family Life Commission is asking for a Cambridge Deanery Rep. Anyone interested should speak with Fr. Pat.
- Book sale raised over £400
- East African Crisis − £2,300 so far
- Harvest Fast − on going
- Lent Appeal − help requested for next year
- Ongoing presence in school
- More people wanted as MP lobbyists
- Campaign for tax on financial transactions
- Bidding prayers: Joe Tucker said this has now been going for a year and that there has been a steady trickle of positive feedback. They would like a few more volunteers training is available. Fr. Pat felt this is encouraging. Sr. Pat said that in Canada she had seen readers, Eucharistic ministers and those leading bidding prayers as part of the procession. It was noted that visiting priests did need to know how we do this at St. Laurence’s.
- SVP need to know of people who need to be visited.
- Justice and Peace − with OLEM − there was a fair to show what was happening.
- Life in the Spirit seminars and Celebrate Weekends − details on notice boards − see Sandra Hobson.
- Archbishop Conti has sent letter to Scottish parishes are the government’s plans re legislation for Same Sex marriages. There was a discussion round this issue.
- Interfaith Group: Karen Rodgers asked that attention be drawn to Faith Fair on 20th November.
- Diocesan Youth Camp is a brilliant experience for the young. Took place over August Bank Holiday weekend.
Dates for next year’s Forum meetings
- Thursday 19th January
- Monday 23rd April
- Thursday 12th July
- Monday 8th October