The Parochial Church Council , or P.C.C. , is an executive committee of the parish with powers and duties defined by certain Acts of Parliament. The membership consists of the clergy and churchwardens of the parish, together with a number of representatives of the laity elected by the annual parochial church meeting of the parish. The P.C.C. secretary and the treasurer are elected from the PCC. In addition there are two ex officio members who are the elected members of the Deanery Synod.
In addition to their formal duties, P.C.C. members act as representatives for all parishioners in the affairs of the church. Apart from the vicar, who is ex-officio chairman, all P.C.C. members are elected directly by the parishioners.
Here at St John's our PCC is elected annually at the Annual Parochial Meeting, which usually takes place in April. To be elected on to the PCC, a person needs to be on the electoral roll, aged 16 years or over and consents to being appointed . Deanery Synod reresentatives are elected every three years.
The functions of the PCC are set out in The Parochial Church Councils (Powers) Measures Act 1956 and The Synodical Government Measure of 1969. Prior to 1919 the administration and finances of a parish were the legal responsibility of the incumbent and the churchwardens. The members of congregations had little say in the running of the church except in electing the churchwardens. They now also elect members of the PCC and the PCC is a democratically elected body responsible to church members who are registered on the electoral roll.
As we are a registered charity, we have been required since 2009 to provide information about the PCC (including the accounts and annual report as received by the Annual Church Meeting) to the Charity Commission. This information is available on the Charity Commission website:
www.charity-commission.gov.uk where the PCC may be found listed as Charity No 1132333.
As a result of the elections held at the Annual Parochial Church Meeting folling Mass on Sunday 14th April 2013 the following people will serve on the PCC.
Philip Glanfield (Acting Chair) Appointed September 2013
Revd Fr Jonathan MacGillivray (Chair) Resigned September 2013
Revd Margaret Gallagher
David Allen ((Church Warden) elected 15/9/13
Wendy Blakemore Hon Secretary) Appoined 25/09/13
Kevin Gallagher (Hon PCC Treasurer)
Cynthia Hoggart ( Deanery Synod Representative)
Shaun Hooper Co-opted 27/9/13
Alan Jackson (Churchwarden) Resigned 15/9/13
Stuart Jackson Appointed 27/11/13
Claire Jenkins (churchwarden ) Resigned 15/9/13
Carol Lewis (Churchwarden ) elected 20/10/13
Sussie Lotfian Resigned 25/09/13
Stanley Norman Appointed 27/11/13
Brenda Stephenson (Deanery Synod Representative)
The deanery synod representatives Carol Lewis and Brenda Stephenson were elected in 2011 and will serve until 2014. Carol Lewis resigned following her election as churchwarden on the 20th October and was replaced by Cynthia Hoggart on 27th November 2013.
Meeting dates for 2013/2014:
The first meeting of the new council will be on the 9th May. Dates for subsequent meetings are during 2013: 10th June, 24th July, 5th September, 17th October, and the 27th November. In 2014 they will be on 9th January, 28th February and 1st April. The Annual Parochial Church Meeting will be held on Sunday the 21st April 2014.
At the meeting of parishioners that preceeded this meeting Claire Jenkins and Alan Jackson were re-elected as Church Wardens . Carol Lewis, Cynthia Hoggett and Stewart Jackson were elected as Deputy Church Wardens. Claire Jenkins & Alan Jackson resigned on the 15th September and were replaced by David Allen (elected 15/9/13) and Carol Lewis (elected 20/10/13) relinquishing her rolo as deputy warden.
We assure them of our thoughts and prayers as we face a challenging future together, but a future underpinned by the God who calls us all by name and gives us grace to fulfil our callings.
Secretary's Report of the activities of the Parochial Church Council during the year 2012 - 2013.
Eight meetings of the PCC including one extraordinary meeting have been held since the Annual Parochial Church Meeting in April 2012.
The main items considered at meetings of the PCC were as follows:-
All PCC meetings had ‘Finance Matters' as a standing agenda item. Matters relating to finance are dealt with separately and extensively in the APCM Financial Statement therefore no further details will be included in this report. (Accounts are lodged with the Charity Commission).
Missional Leadership Deployment 2020
In a briefing paper from the Bishop's Council considered by the PCC in June 2012 it was stated that by 2020 the Diocese expects to be paying the same number of people as in 2012 but it is estimated that there will be one third less priests due to retirement etc. Patterns of ministry are changing and this requires consideration of what a good pattern would be in 2020 for the church to be missional. Deaneries have the responsibility of coming up with ideas, taking the community with them. Following work by the Deanery Leadership Team two papers were produced putting forward ideas and these were discussed by the PCC, providing useful material for Deanery Synod representatives to use at a debate on the matter held in November 2012. A short paper indicating the thinking of the PCC was written to inform the November meeting. Fr Jonathan submitted an initial report to the Bishop's Council and it is expected that the ideas put forward will come back from the Council to the Deanery Leadership Team for modifications etc., probably for some time. It is expected that the Bishop's Council will set guidelines for deployment but that each deanery will have to make the ultimate decisions.
Inclusion at St John's – families, children and the nature of our common life
In May 2012 the PCC discussed how St John's engages with children and their families. It was felt that our style of worship is rather alien to children (and some parents) and that there was a need to modify what we do to ensure better engagement and particularly make children feel part of what was going on. It was suggested that we have a different type of service one Sunday in each month, which would be shorter, simplified, with no organ or servers but which would still retain the catholic tradition. The first service of this type took place in June 2012 and has come to be known as the ‘All-age community Mass'.
This form of service was reviewed by the PCC in February 2013 and whilst there was general agreement that it was on the whole working quite well it did highlight the fact that we perhaps need to do more in respect of our care for one another generally and particularly in respect of children and young families. It was also agreed that we need to make the service better known by publicising it more.
Away Day – March 2013
Nearly three years after the reordering at St John's was completed the PCC was asked to consider what our mission is looking to the future. Mission is about inclusion and being generous in our inclusion but the question raised was what is our vision for this. It was suggested that we have an away day at a different venue to St John's and that a facilitator should be used. It was ultimately agreed to hold an away day for the whole congregation at Beeston Parish Church on Saturday, 16 March 2013 at which Pam Bishop (Chair of the House of Laity in the Diocesan Synod) would act as facilitator. The day would take the form of an extended Eucharist and celebrate who we are and where we might go in the future.
St John 's building development
It had been considered for some time that the radiator at the east end of the Lady Chapel should be provided with a cover. It was also considered that a matching pedestal for the statue of Our Lady would also be a valuable addition. In addition we had been required in respect of safety regulations to provide door-opening restrictors in respect of the glass doors at the main entrance porch. Our architect was asked to submit plans for each of the above. In respect of the radiator he suggested a gradine, which is a cover and shelf arrangement, with a matching pedestal for the statue of Our Lady. In respect of the door-opening restrictors a prior proposal for the use of stainless steel guards was replaced by a proposal to extend the stonework at the sides of the entrance porch to form two abutments that would have the necessary restricting effect. These plans were approved by the PCC and the necessary faculty has been applied for. The work will be funded from the money remaining in the development fund.
Stations of the Cross bequest
As reported in the 2012 report Sheila Munks very kindly made a donation to St John's in memory of her late husband Bill and it was agreed that this should be used to fund a set of Stations of the Cross. Designs have now been completed and an example of one of the stations was shown to the PCC. The work has been created from papier-m â ch é with a covering of sand, the design being in relief and with a light wood frame. Most PCC members expressed a liking for the work as had Sheila but there were some concerns about the frame which have yet to be resolved.
Collections at weddings and funerals
Under a new parochial fees structure churches are encouraged not to have collections at weddings and funerals and it was expected that something from the increased fees would go to churches to compensate for this. The PCC felt that it would still be in order to give those attending weddings and funerals the opportunity to contribute to church finances should they wish to do so by simply placing a basket at the door but not actively requesting contributions.
Following an incident in the church grounds in November 2012 when our cleaner was aggressively confronted by an unknown person the PCC considered what might be done to increase safety in the environs of the church. It was agreed to request estimates to supply and install two lighting columns to supplement those already alongside the path in the church grounds and for the installation of an external LED floodlight over the side entrance door to the church on the north path. This is ongoing.
St John's Gardens ' project
As reported last year a number from St John's congregation and members of the local community had looked at what might be done to clean up the church grounds and increase biodiversity. It was hoped that there may be funding available from Nottingham City Council but ultimately this was not forthcoming, although it is anticipated that there will be some money available from other sources and funding applications are in process. Some pruning of the cherry trees has been carried out to remove dead wood.
Legacies left to St John's
The late Marjorie Stevenson and Dorothy Stirland both very kindly named St John's as a legatee in their wills and the details are being dealt with by their respective solicitors at the present time.
Reports regarding Junior Church , Deanery matters (including Deanery Synod), Ecumenical meetings and Cluster parishes were all standing items at PCC meetings. There are now no formal ecumenical meetings but clergy still meet informally and churches take part in ecumenical events such as the Sherwood Festival which was held on 16 June 2012. Cluster parishes will be one way in which churches are resourced for ministry by 2020 (see item on Missional Leadership Deployment 2020) and are a way of developing ministerial exchange and greater thinking across boundaries.
David Allen Hon PCC Secretary
Vicar's Report to the Annual Parocial Church Meeting 2013
One of the thing many people fear about getting older is the possibility that they might begin to lose some of their mental capacity. It is indeed very distressing to share in that process with someone you love. But mere forgetfulness is not the same as losing mental capacity. Thankfully. And so, as this 60-year-old spent a futile hour and more yesterday afternoon trying in vain to find a particular file on his computer's hard-drive, he also (re)discovered several dozens of letters and articles which he has written over the years, about myriad topics to do with St John's . And, of course, he'd completely forgotten about almost all of them... But an awful lot has happened over the years, to do with buildings, people, policies, so it's easy to forget every detail ... The life of many parishes churches is often assumed to be one of humdrum changelessness – but that certainly hasn't been typical of this church's common life. Core things – such as the centrality of the celebration of the eucharist – remain fundamental to our essence; but around that central core life continues to grow and evolve.
Apart from That Birthday – and again, very many thanks to everyone who contributed to that particular celebration – what else has happened in this past year? Well, we've got a new priest on the block, and as Margaret continues to grow into her vocation as a priest of the catholic Church I think all our lives are being enriched as we share in that process. Margaret has also co-led with Claire Jenkins and others, a Living Christianity course – a sort-of “Alpha-for-the-open-minded Catholic” – and this has helped several folk here to grow in their discipleship during this past year. So, thank you, Margaret – and David and Brenda for the parts you also share in the ministry of presiding in this community's worship and preaching and growing-in-discipleship. During the year we also had a change of churchwarden, as Susan took over the pivotal role of overseeing the community hall bookings, and Claire stepped up to share with Alan in the important ministry of churchwarden. I reckon they complement each other's gifts in that role. We've got a new honorary PCC treasurer, too; and I'm sure Kevin will emphatically agree that it's purely coincidental but we're also likely to be more-or-less on track on paying our Parish Share for 2013 – a fact that delights this Area Dean! So thank you to everyone who is working to make that a possibility. Part of the improvement in our corporate finances hinges on the good use of the community spaces; but there are still lots of un-booked ‘slots' in the diary each week, so everyone should be on the lookout for potential new users of our wonderful community spaces – which are primarily there as part of our service to our local communities, but which with wise stewardship will also help us to stay afloat financially.
Our church “Away Day” last month formally began a process which we need to take forward into the coming year: about more clearly defining our vision for the future – and making some decisions to act upon that vision. The new PCC will have a busy agenda prioritising those developing discussions – and including others in the thinking and planning whenever possible. Incidentally, it's very good to see so many (new) folk offering to take on the responsibility of sharing in the leadership of this parish church in this coming year by becoming members of the PCC.
We're all immensely grateful to those faithful folk who over the past year have continued to do many of those essential but often unacknowledged or unglamorous tasks which are fundamental to keeping our worship running smoothly, the building and grounds kept clean and in order, the supplies ordered, the flowers arranged, the refreshments flowing, the money banked, the website kept up-to-date, etc. So, to Carol, Laurie, Ray, Janet, Anne, David, Shaun – and all who work with you: thank you. Thanks, too, to our paid staff: Sarena and Bob for their contribution to our community facility.
Sadly, our worshipping community has had to say “good-bye” to some notable characters in the past 12 months: most recently it was Lesley Scrimshaw whose funeral obsequies were in Easter week, but also during the past year we've also commended to God for the next stage in their life with the Infinite Love at the heart of all creation Lindsay Dobson, Dorothy Stirland, Marjorie Stevenson and Pylyp Matias (son of two of our regular home communicants), and many others from parish and community. May they rest in peace and rise in glory. We are grateful to those who have made provision in their wills - or via their families - for financial assistance to St John's to continue after them.
During the past year we've begun a new style of “community all-age Mass” on the first Sunday of each month, with a shorter – and yet more participatory - liturgy of the word, some changes to the music, and a generally more ‘relaxed' feel to the celebration. Although we're not (yet) seeing significantly larger numbers of children and families on those Sundays the potential for greater inclusion is surely there. Thank you to those who have embraced this venture with open hearts and minds. “Inclusion” is one of our hooray words at St John's ... Question: What others groups maybe need more positive encouragement to feel included? More work for the new PCC...
My 3-year stint/licence as Area Dean should (I hope) come to an end this year, in the middle of a time of very significant changes at deanery and diocesan levels. The diocesan 2020 vision and strategy – much criticised in some quarters but, I think, realistic in expecting local churches to be proactive in vision and mission rather than expecting “the diocese” to have all the ideas – is challenging all local churches and communities to take seriously the challenges of being the Church in the 21 st century. It's probably the case that many of our inherited structures and expectations (possibly including PCCs, parishes, deaneries and dioceses...) may not be the appropriate tools to enable the Church to be the Church for today and tomorrow. But these are not straight-forward matters: and this is why we at St John's must be active in refining and proclaiming our distinctive vision in a church which nationally often seems to be losing its way. The disgracefully inadequate new marriage document, enthusiastically endorsed by the bench of bishops, is woefully short on proper theological analysis. I hope their anticipated report on the way forward for the ordination of women to the episcopate isn't equally as poorly conceived...
“May you live in interesting times” is a supposedly Chinese proverb/curse often quoted, but whose real origins are obscure. It nonetheless probably reasonably describes the Sitz im Leben / the context of the Christian faith in our day. Many of our inherited structures are proving to be problematic for the proclamation of faith to a supposedly post-modern western world. So some parts of the Church retreat to pre-modern models, and proclaim a gospel dressed in highly contemporary clothes but in essence based on pre-Enlightenment understandings of the world. But the essence of our incarnational religion is that God is involved with who we are as people now, and that revelation of the God-stuff continues. We can't, we must not become enmeshed in what amounts to little more than a religious heritage industry bolstering up an understanding of the world that no longer exists.
The Gospel is vital / living / ever new. May our work together in this coming year bring the riches of our church tradition into the realities of peoples' daily lives in Carrington and Sherwood – and indeed across the diocese - so that St John's may (continue to) be a beacon illuminating the paths of all who hope for a brighter, gentler and more inclusive community and world.
J M MacGillivray. Vicar and Area Dean