Pastoral Council

Congratulations! We have a Parish Pastoral Council!

After weeks of praying and opening to the guidance of the Spirit, 12 members for the Parish Pastoral Council were selected. Thank you to all who participated in the two evenings making them such a success!

There is a tremendous amount of hope about the future of St. Catharine’s. The group has a great love for St. Catharine and wants to share that with others. There is a desire to reach out to families and individuals of the parish, meeting them where they are at and providing opportunities to re-energize the community.

The new Parish Pastoral Council members are:

Nancy Arena
Chris Briamonte
Tom Critelli
James Driscoll
Matthew Mark Jr.
Carol McIlvain
Valerie McLaughlin
Al Rabbat
Steve Salese
Gerry Scharfenberger
Mike West
James Yannello

There will be an official commissioning blessing of the Council at the 5:00 pm mass on Saturday, October 17. Then the group will have their first meeting next month starting with Pastoral Council training. And I already have homework in mind!

We thank you, Lord, for raising up a great team of people to advise the Pastor.

Congratulations to the Parish Pastoral Council!

Fr. Pat



A Parish Pastoral Council (PPC) is a consultative body to the pastor.
The role of a PPC is to help the pastor in coming to understand and live out the parish’s pastoral mission fostering pastoral activity in caring for and shepherding the flock. The PPC engages in both visioning and long-term planning and is not a coordinating or implementation committee. It is not concerned with the day-to-day administrative operations that are the responsibility of the Pastor, parochial vicar(s), deacons and parish staff. The PPC is also distinct from the Parish Finance Council.

In a consultative role, the Parish Pastoral Council has a specific three-fold role:

  • Investigates under authority of the pastor
  • Reflects on what it investigated
  • Forms a conclusion which it offers to the pastor as a recommendation

Additionally, the PPC is the eyes and ears of St Catharine parish for the pastor and aid him in gaining additional insights about parish life.

Click this video link for additional information:
Dr Mark Fischer, A vision for Pastoral Council

The Code of Canon Law, 1983 — no. 536.1 “… a pastoral council is to be established in each parish; the pastor presides over it, and through it the Christian faithful along with those who share in the pastoral care of the parish in virtue of their office give their help in fostering pastoral activity.”

For more information on pastoral councils, please visit the Diocese of Trenton website:

Create in us a new heart and a new vision,
O God that the gifts of your Spirit may work in us and renew the face of the earth.
May we be one with you so that our work is Yours and your work is ours.
We ask this in the name of Jesus, Your Son who lives with You
and the Holy Spirit, forever.