The Pastoral Council
At the parish level, a primary instrument for the flow of the new wine into new wineskins is the Pastoral Council. This leadership body discerns the mission of the parish and envisions the ways in which the parishioners are being called by God to carry out that mission. The Pastoral Council is the vessel through which the new wine is poured into new skins.
(Exerpt from Revisioning the Parish Pastoral Council; Mary Ann Gubish, Susan Jenny and Arlene McGannon)
About the Council
The primary role of the Pastoral Council is to be a consultative body for the pastor. The Council is in effect a living model of the parish as a worshiping community.
Often referred to as the "wisdom" of the faith community, the Council's responsibility is to represent the needs of all the people of the parish and by reaching out to the parish determine what issues are impacting their lives. Through a process of prayer, study, dialogue and most importantly, discernment and consensus, the Pastoral Council can recommend practical conclusions regarding these issues.
When policies created by the other consultative bodies impact the entire faith community, these bodies seek consensus with the Pastoral Council. Meetings are held on the first Tuesday of the month.