Happy Easter, everyone.
Daily living brings with it so many small, medium, and large scourgings and deaths that we need the Easter experience of rising again to give us hope.
New news: The Archdiocese is planning an Archdiocesan Pastoral Council.
Question: How will lay people be represented on the new APC? How much input can we have in forming it?
Thanks to one alert person in the Network, we learned that plans for an Archdiocesan Pastoral Council are moving forward and will be discussed in the Archbishop's advisory council of priests at their April meeting.
Diocesan Pastoral Councils are important channels of communication within dioceses encouraged by Vatican II. We haven't had one in this Archdiocese for about 10 years. In January 2013 CCCR/Council of the Baptized published a position paper recommending to Archbishop John Nienstedt that he set a plan in motion. He responded at the time that he was on it.
After a start in July 2013 with a plan circulating among the deans in the 15 deaneries constituting our parishes, the process stalled in the midst of the scandal we are all too familiar with.
After the tip from our Lay Network member in March, we inquired of Vicar General Charles Lachowitzer what plans were in motion. In an email dated March 30, 2015, Fr. Lachowitzer told us that the new plan has been circulated to deans and will be discussed at the April Presbyteral Council meeting.
When are we going to hear about it, you ask? Will we be informed before the plan is finalized, and can we have some input into how the Archdiocesan Pastoral Council is set up?
CCCR/Council of the Baptized position on the APC:
To promote lay buy-in to the mission of the Archdiocese, CCCR/Council of the Baptized has consistently made three points to the decision-makers: 1) lay membership on the APC should be chosen by lay people; 2) lay people should be able to submit agenda items; and 3) meeting of the APC should be open to the public.
The APC will not be a decision-making body. It is advisory only. Nevertheless, if the chief decision-maker, the Archbishop, values the collaboration of the lay people in making decisions that affect their lives, he should open up the advice-giving process. A closed, top-down APC will not have the confidence of the people.
Do you agree with this position? Let us know by replying to this email.
Please email Fr. Charles Lachowitzer, thanking him for his initiative and encouraging him to set up the APC so that a diversity of voices can give advice to the Archbishop. LachowitzerC@archspm.org
Please ask your pastor to tell the dean of his deanery that lay people are interested and concerned about the new APC. The structure of the plan has to include a way for the Archbishop to hear all voices.
Come to the Council of the Baptized meeting on Tuesday, April 14, 7:00 p.m. at Gloria Dei Lutheran Church, 700 S. Snelling, St. Paul. The conversation will be about cultural change, moving from postmodern to integral consciousness. To move toward a more Christian mindset from the current "culture war" mindset, we can affirm each other's values. Come talk about this with us.
AND KEEP INVITING NEW REGISTRANTS FOR THE LAY NETWORK! Registration at www.cccrmn.org.
Thanks from all of us at CCCR and Council of the Baptized