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December  2015-12-16   PPC Minutes

Members were informed that the problem of the outside lighting  at St Malachy’s had been dealt with and that the sacristan was waiting for a particular part from abroad which was needed to rectify the heating problem.

Much preparation has gone into the forthcoming Year of Mercy which will begin on December 8th and end on 20th November 2016. A Pastoral Letter from Archbishop  Eamon will be going out to all the parishes in the diocese informing them about the opening of the Holy Door which  in the cathedral,  at 5pm on Sunday 13th December.  There will also be a Walk of Mercy through the cathedral, stopping at various points along the way with suggested prayers. A Wall of Mercy will be in place with inspiring verses, prayers, stories and images and a sizeable  confession  box has been sourced which pilgrims will see when they enter the main body of the church to remind them of reconciliation which is a major theme in this Year of Mercy. (some helpful quotes  will be hanging from the Tree of Mercy beside it.)

The Altar Servers Party was deemed a great success. The children had enjoyed the afternoon and the magician hadn’t needed to wave his magic wand in order to make the pizzas disappear!

The Quick Journey through the Bible continues with much enthusiasm from the participants.  There have also been several requests about doing the LITS (Life in the Spirit) seminars again and it was felt that we could indeed organise these in 2016.

There had been a good attendance at the recent PPC Training in Keady High School (Training was for our local PART PPCs as well). Fr Gerry Campbell had proved an excellent communicator/facilitator and it was felt that Armagh PPC was making good headway in our attempts to keep up with the implementation of the objectives.

A brief discussion followed on the importance again of reaching out to our young people and perhaps getting a young person to speak about her/his faith at mass.  The longstanding problem of our poor efforts at congregational singing was addressed with the suggestion of planting strong singers at  strategic points throughout the churches. It was suggested also that someone lead the singing at the 10 am daily mass in the cathedral. Hymn sheets are available at the back of the cathedral.

Again we were reminded of how important it was to keep reading the Pastoral Plan and of the great need to focus on marginalised groups particularly in this coming Year of Mercy. Archbishop  Eamon has asked that each  PPC focus on ONE objective in each of the three areas and liaising with our PART reps might prove fruitful.

As always we began and finished with prayer but this final meeting of 2015 ended with some refreshments in the Parochial House. A very blessed and merry Christmas to all!