Pastoral Council Minutes




13th June 2019


Fr Declan Boyce                                Fr Victor Samugana                         Sr Carmelita Vallecera

Francie Cadden                                 Sr Elvira Rosel

Crispin Andaya                                  Maire Finan                                        Pauline Cushman

Grainne Kelly                                     Donal Lyons                                        Dermot Layden



Fr Yashin Jos                                       Ronan Hegarty                                  Margaret Prior


  1. The Minutes of the previous meeting of 09/05/19 were read, proposed by Grainne Kelly and seconded by Maire Finan.
  2. Matters Arising: a.) Trocaire Clothes Collection: The Recycling Company involved left some bags, which Fr Declan will deal with over the summer. b.) Cathedral Clean-up: Francie Cadden noted that there are 150 people involved in ministries in the Parish and he proposed that the Easter Clean-up should be billed as being ‘in preparation for First Holy Communions and Confirmations’ so as to involve more of them. Maire Finan proposed sending invitations to the groups in the Cathedral.
  1. Cluster Report:

Corpus Christi:           23/06/19 – the theme for the children will be the Environment.

Scarden Cemetery Mass:      30/06/19.

Garland Sunday:        28/07/19 – there will be a bus for the return journey.

Sligo Social Services Family Event:  this was a great success.

Safeguarding Issues:  a follow-up letter after the John Paul II Award students’  work experience was discussed.

Lough Derg Pilgrimage:         this is expensive at €45, and €20 for the bus – next year the Cluster will subsidise the bus.

Sligo Cemetery Mass:                        Fr Declan felt that organization of this event needs to change and be organized by the priests of the three Sligo parishes rather than the Cluster.  It is better for people to stand at their graves with a supply of water which will be blessed so they can bless their own graves.  The date should be known from the previous year, and proper speakers would help.  Also, it needn’t be centred around the Eucharist.

  1. Report from the Mission Sub-Committee: Good progress has been made but has been hindered by a lack of response from the relevant department in the IT; all the other speakers are on board.  The Saturday Workshop has been set up, and the poster is finalized and very striking.  All will be ready to go to print by the next meeting on 20/06/19.  The meeting of Margaret Prior and Pauline Cushman with the County Manager was very positive:  he is very interested and pledged a sum of money as yet unknown – he will be unable to provide the €5,000 we asked for but will do his best.  He also provided the names of relevant people in the County Council who will provide a stall at the Workshop, literature and education  .  There will be an on-going stall in the Cathedral, with contents up-dated by someone from the Sub-committee, and also a post-Mission review.
  2. A.O.B.: Fr Declan reported that the Child Safety Officer is very happy with Cathedral procedures; they recommended keeping Child Safety on the PPC Agenda, and once or twice per year getting the Child Safety Officers to report on what they are doing.

The Data Protection Officer feels the Cathedral is up to speed and is pleased with computer access parameters:  if the Gardaí want to see CCTV footage, they must have a letter from the Inspector.  The PPC members, Finance Committee and those who distribute the parish envelopes must sign a confidentiality letter.

Regarding Garda Vetting, Fr Declan discussed how long data should be kept, and by whom.

Sister Carmelita is returning to the Philippines!  Everyone was very sorry to hear this and thanked her for her wonderful work here. Her date of departure is as yet unknown.

  1. Next Meeting of the PPC: Thursday, 12/09/19 at 8pm, in St Mary’s.




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Pauline Cushman, Secretary                                    Francie Cadden, Chairperson.






9th May 2019



Fr Declan Boyce                                Fr Yashin Jos                                       Fr Victor Samugana

Francie Cadden                                 Margaret Prior                                  Sr Elvira Rosel

Crispin Andaya                                  Maire Finan                                        Pauline Cushman

Grainne Kelly                                     Donal Lyons                                        Dermot Leydon





  1. The Minutes of the previous meeting of 11/04/19 were read, proposed by Fr Victor, and seconded by Sr Elvira.
  2. Matters Arising: as follows:
  3. Trocaire Clothes Collection:

Fiona is arranging the actual collection of the clothes by the Recycling Company.

In advance of this, the PPC will attend at the Gillooly Hall at 7pm on 17/05/19 to pre-weigh the collected clothes with baggage scales, and label their weight to ensure the correct payment.

  1. Cathedral Clean-up:

The difficulty of encouraging people to participate in Parish projects arranged by groups outside those they belong to, was discussed.  Fr Yashin commented that while there is excellent work by the individual Parish groups, like the PPC, Legion of Mary, etc, there is poor group activity for the common good i.e. for the Parish as a whole.  Why are people shy of participating?  In an effort to overcome this reluctance, the words PPC will be left out of the heading of the next Cathedral Clean-up.

        This will be discussed again in the September or October meeting.

  1. Easter Review:

Chrism Mass:  The consensus was that this was excellent.

Holy Thursday:  The symbolism of gathering grandparents and their grandchildren for washing of the feet was well-appreciated.  Fr Yashin observed that the grandchildren often came from other counties, and thus the Cathedral family was swelled. The Homilies were great – Fr Declan and Bishop Kevin gave different outlooks based on a common theme, the recent fire in Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris.

Good Friday:  Fr Declan observed that nationally, there have been smaller congregations on this feast day and this was reflected locally.  Maire though the portrayal of the Passion especially in the evening was superb.  Margaret appreciated the different perspective on the Passion of Christ each year.

Fr Declan commented that the demand for Confession was high, with many people returning to the Faith after many years which is wonderful.  Usually Christmas is the busiest time for Confession.  Margaret thought the Cluster Reconciliaiton Service with a reflection on the Prodigal Son was lovely.

The Altar Society did a wonderful job and their new administration has injected new life.



  1. Report from Cluster:
  2. Margaret reported that it had been hoped the one-day Lough Derg Pilgrimage from St Anne’s would be wheelchair-friendly regarding the transportation, but unfortunately this is not so.
  3. 26/05/19: Cemetery Sunday in Sligo Cemetery.
  4. 23/06/19: Corpus Christi:  For this, Colette Furlong is developing the theme of the Environment for the children:  e. the Wheat and the Wine.
  5. Funeral Music was discussed. The Singer provides song/hymn options to the Family; it is proposed that they also be provided to the Cluster in order to expand the Singers’ repertoire.
  6. Trainee Catechists Programme for Secondary schools – this was discussed and it was wondered if the Programme was overly-academic, thus losing some students. The necessity of providing continuing work for the Catechists after the school programme ends was emphasised.
  7. The Alpha Programme: Fr Pat proposes that graduates become future leaders.
  8. Those recently-received into the Church are keen to be involved in the Community to discuss Jesus -it is important to facilitate this so as not to lose their enthusiasm.
  9. 23/05/19: Cluster Gathering.
  10. Report from Mission Sub-Committee:

Preparations are proceeding well.  Communication from the IT is awaited, but the other speakers have been tied down.

A vote was held on the format of the Brochure, 2 or 3 pages and the result was 3 pages.

Margaret, Pauline and Grainne are meeting the County Manager, Kieran Hayes on 20/05/19, to discuss funding.

  1. Rota for Father’s Day distribution of gift at Mass by PPC Members:

15/06/19 Saturday:          7.30pm:                Donal Lyons and ? Ronan Hegarty

16/06/19 Sunday:             8.30am:                Sr Carmelita and Grainne Kelly

                                                10.30am:              Grainne Kelly and Dermot Leydon

                                                12.00pm:             Maire Finan and Pauline Cushman

                                                  7.00pm;              Francie Cadden and Sr Elvira.


  1. AOB:

                Fr Victor thanked the Parish for the generous response to the St Paul’s Missionary Society Collection.

                Dermot Leydon reported that the Cathedral clock is not working.

  1. Next Meeting; Thursday 13/06/19 at the earlier time of 7.30pm – a barbecue.



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Pauline Cushman, Secretary                                                       Francie Cadden, Chairperson.




11th April 2019


Fr. Declan Boyce                    Fr. Yashin Jos                         Fr. Victor Samugana

Francie Cadden                      Margaret Prior                        Ronan Hegarty

Crispin Andaya                      Maire Finan                             Pauline Cushman

Grainne Kelly



Donal Lyons                           Sr. Elvira                             Dermot Leydon


1. The Minutes of the previous meeting of 14/03/19 were read, proposed by Margaret Prior, and seconded by Maire Finan.


2. Matters Arising:

a. Hunger Lunch: this should continue.  It was so popular, the soup ran out!

b. Stations of the Cross for Busy People: These are going very well, with 12 to 15 people attending most nights, and are to continue going forward.  Captions are to be added to the outdoor stations, which along with the banners were very remarked-on.

c. Trocaire Clothes Collection: This is on-going.

d. Random allocation to Parishioners of names of characters in the Passion of Christ for meditation during Lent: Margaret felt we will never know the benefit this project may have had.  Ronan Hegarty suggested doing it in schools and Fr Declan said this will be in schools for Advent.

e. DVD’s of the Old Testament: This is a good programme, but people are already committed to other activities at this time.  Dermot is to advise when available.

f. St. Patrick’s Purgatory: Margaret felt it had excellent organisation and lovely lay out and all agreed.  Fr Declan reported that a total of 50 people participated and 5 completed the whole thing.  He felt next year we might set it up on the Monday to run for a week in the Gillooly Hall as ‘The Lough Derg Experience’, without the all-night vigil.  He will also replace Gillooly Hall exposition of the Blessed Sacrament with a Crucifix as it is necessary for someone to be present with the Host at all times.  He felt that a part was missing – there was no time to talk with others in what was intended to be the casual session in the Gillooly Hall – i.e. the Hall quickly became as solemn as the Exposition area.  In summary: to be kept but format to be reviewed for next year.  Fr Declan will book the Hall for a week as part of the Lenten programme, and notify the Secondary Schools; the question of keeping the all-night vigil to be decided.

g. St. Paul’s Missionary Society Collection: A total of €3,710.00 was collected.

h. Easter: The PPC members will serve tea after the Chrism Mass, as many Diocesan PPC Members attend.  The Presentation of Mary Sisters will set it up.

Holy Thursday:  Fr Yashin has arranged 6 Grandparents and 6 grandchildren to have their feet washed by the Bishop.

Good Friday:  At 3pm the usual Narration of the Passion will take place.  At 8pm there will be a contemporary Stations of the Cross from the perspective of parishioners resident in some of our local nursing homes, narrated by Frank and Teresa Murphy.

Holy Saturday:  there will be Morning Prayer of the Church, and then the Easter Vigil Mass at 9pm.

Easter Sunday:  Masses as usual.

i. Cathedral Clean-up: 12/04/19.

j. Mother’s Day: The gift of one-decade rosaries with instructions on saying the rosary, was very well-received and Fr Declan read out a thank you card from someone in Strandhill.  He re-iterated that it was better to give the gift out at the Altar by the PPC members, as opposed to at the exits.  The same gift will be distributed on Father’s Day, but it will be a wooden rosary.


3. Report from Cluster:

13/4/19:  Mullaghmore retreat walk, with Colette Furlong as Narrator.

15/4/19:  Friary Cluster Penitential Service – Confession.

17/4/19:  Avalon Centre Hunger Lunch.

17/4/19:  Chrism Mass in the Cathedral.

14/5/19:  Lough Derg Cluster Pilgrimage.

23/5/19:  Cluster Social Evening.

26/5/19:  Sligo Cemetery Sunday Mass at 3pm.

  9/6/19:  Sligo Social Services 50th Anniversary Family Fun Day.

30/6/19:  Scarden Cemetery Mass

   7/7/19:  Diocesan Marriage Celebration.

                   Holy Well Garland Sunday Mass 6am, after walking from St Anne’s.

Following on the idea of Transition Year Students’ work experience within the Cluster, Mary Nicholson is to write the form for Child Protection.

A panel is to be formed to speak to secondary school children on Faith.  Fr Declan noted that Catechists and JP II students are already available.

The Day for Eucharistic Ministers on 23/3/19 was very successful, with 18 attending.

It is proposed to bring Confession to the community, in Johnston’s Court at Christmas, and to the schools as has been very successful in Ballymote.

The Stations of the Cross from the perspective of Nursing Home residents is eagerly-awaited.


4. Report from Mission Sub-committee:

This is on course; Francie is working on sponsorship and there will be a Retiring Collection at the free Liam Lawton concert.


5. A.O.B.:

A letter of condolence from the PPC has been sent to the family of the late Ray Kelly.

The PPC will adjourn for the summer during July and August.

The PPC Review with Colette Furlong will be held in October or November.


Next Meeting: Thursday 9th May 2019 at 8pm in St Mary’s.


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Pauline Cushman, Secretary                                                     Francie Cadden, Chairperson.