This community of parishioners exists primarily to help the pastor in discerning the will of the Lord for Our Lady of the Ridge. Membership is invited by the Council, and a lengthy formation process allows new members to understand the meaning of "shared decision making" and "discernment."
All members of the Our Lady of the Ridge Parish Family -- laity, religious and clergy, share the responsibility of building up the Kingdom of God by fulfilling the mission of the Church. All of the believers also share responsibility for its life. The Pastoral Council is about the life of the faith community. It is formed to serve Our Lady of the Ridge Parish Family by preserving the spiritual vision of the faith community and by fostering unity within the parish.
The Pastoral Council is one of the main consultative bodies with which the Pastor regularly meets. As its name implies, its main focus is on the pastoral life of the parish community.
The Pastoral Council is responsible for preparation and review of a parish mission statement. The council is also responsible for pastoral planning, including periodic reevaluation of the parish mission statement, ongoing needs assessment, defining parish goals, setting broad strategies for implementing these goals and evaluating the parish's success in meeting those goals.
The Pastoral Council is NOT a coordinating body that organizes the many activities of the parish or makes decisions about very specific parish projects or issues.
This organization is made up of parishioners who are invited by the Pastor and Business Manager to assist in the financial planning of the parish. The main purpose of the Finance Committee is to advise both the Business Manager and Pastor on financial decisions that need to be made by the parish. The committee meets on a quarterly basis or more often, if needed.
Advisement comes in a variety of ways. The Finance Committee reviews, recommends changes, and approves the parish budget. We are a Church, but we also have a "business dimension." Because we have a 1.5 million dollar budget and employ almost fifty individuals, this organization helps fine tune our financial life. Included in the budget are the budgets of the various ministries as well as the Experience Religion program (CCD) and the school.
The Finance Committee reviews the year-to-date parish financial figures as well as comparing the figures to both the previous year's figures and to the budget. This allows the Finance Committee, as parishioners, to review and/or question the revenue received as well as expenditures made by the parish. The parish's Annual Report is also reviewed and approved by the Finance Committee prior to its submittal to the Archdiocese.
The Finance Committee reviews quotations and advises on major capital improvements and or expenditures that need to be made. Recommendations on the implementation of major parish or parish organizational fundraisers are provided by the Finance Committee.
Presently, the Finance Committee is comprised of six individuals with varying careers and expertise. Members are appointed by the Pastor.