Parish Forum Meeting

Posted on: 20/01/2021

Dear Friends

Good morning - what miserable weather but it’s Manchester and we’re used to it.

I would like to re-send yesterday’s text because I’m not sure how else to emphasise the questions we are facing as a parish, diocese and Church. We know that there are no easy answers but … we won’t get any unless questions are asked and the inevitable challenges are faced.

'Following on from Bishop John’s Pastoral Letter on Sunday, we are very much aware that the future shape and vision for our parish and diocese is very much under scrutiny. The pandemic has meant that so much of our customary parish life has either slowed down or come to a halt - albeit temporary; our celebration of Mass in open churches, our ordinary formation programmes, like the Sacramental Programme and our Journey of Faith. We are missing so much and we simply can’t wait for the pandemic to finish, whenever that might be.

However, we can’t simply hope to return to the way things were - the Church (our parish) must adapt to the changing realities such as fewer priests, declining numbers and greater-than-ever pastoral challenges. So let’s start now, please.

And so, as we have said, there will be a preliminary meeting of the Parish Forum on Zoom this evening at 7.00pm which will help us to think about where we are now and to plan the next steps for Holy Trinity parish. We are blessed to have a very active parish with great traditions across all three churches; with the guidance of the Holy Spirit, we need to harvest all the talents in our midst.

Everyone is welcome to share in the meeting but I would like you to consider some questions beforehand which will form the agenda for the meeting, which will last no more than one hour - promise!

1. What of the experience of these current times would we want to hold on to as being lessons learned?

2. Which of our great traditions do we need to hold on to?

3. What is our vision for the Church/diocese/parish

4. What will help us to adapt - possibly to becoming a single-priest-parish with Swinton and Pendlebury

Everyone is welcome, of course, but particularly members of the Finance and Admin Committee, the Lay Leadership team, the Communications team, the Bereavement support team, the Ecology team and the uniform groups.'

We need the Spirit of courage to face the challenge and the Spirit of hope to drive us forward

St Joseph, dreamer of holy dreams, pray for us

Every blessing

Fr John

PS Our schools are an absolutely key component of our parish life and will remain so but I’m very conscious that they have so many other things to manage at the moment - we keep them in our prayer.

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