As members of the Holy Family Parish, we are being urged to put into practice the faith we believe in. We have been encouraged to become involved in and take responsibility for the life of the Church - our Church.
If we take Mass as an example, we are no longer asked to simply attend Mass, but to be involved as ministers at Mass by undertaking activities such as altar servers, readers, Eucharistic Ministers and choir singers.
A minister is “one who serves” in the Church. Ministry means “service in or to the Church”. There are a wide range of ministries at Holy Family Parish that people can participate in. Many of these ministries are mentioned below.
The mission of our Church is to share the responsibility of building up the spiritual and material welfare of our community by promoting God's values of love, justice and peace and extending this message of goodwill beyond our immediate boundaries. This mission will never be totally fulfilled. Rather, it is the goal toward which we continually aspire. It is a goal for the entire parish, not just for a segment of it. Hence, the more parishioners we can persuade to utilise their God-given talents within the parish and the community at large, the more we can foster and promote our mission.
"The framework behind parish involvement is the concept of Christian stewardship. This concept is very Biblical and also very practical. It acknowledges that everything we have is a gift from God, even life itself. The good steward is the individual who recognises his or her giftedness and who joyfully returns a fair share of his or her time, talent and treasure to a loving and generous God.
PARISH PASTORAL COUNCIL
The Parish Pastoral Council shares the responsibility for building a vibrant community that is embedded in the Eucharist and built on faith, hope and charity.
Aware that Baptism is a call to holiness, the Parish Pastoral Council is fired with the love of faith in Jesus and service in the Church. Therefore, the Council prays together and discusses issues pertinent to the growth in faith, hope and charity of the Parish and discerns the various needs, hopes and gifts of the Parish community in the areas of faith formation and evangelisation, liturgy and worship, finance and stewardship, and outreach.
The Parish Pastoral Council is an advisory body to the Parish Priest and has a consultative vote on pertinent issues within the Parish. Members will be baptised people in full communion with the Church and who participate fully within the life of the parish.
PARISH FINANCE COUNCIL
The Finance Council is a consultative body providing advice and recommendations to the Priest concerning the stewardship of the parish’s fiscal and temporal resources, including long range financial planning to support the mission of the parish.
The Council has the responsibility of reviewing monthly financial information pertaining to the operation of the Church and School. The Council approves annual budgets for both entities and is involved in approval of all major capital expenditures. The priest appoints members of the Finance Council.
This lay ministry works with school age children from Kindergarten to Year 6. The children are invited to the Parish Hall to listen to the Scriptures of the day in a language they can understand. The aim is to help children grow in their faith and their understanding of the readings. Adults present and explore readings with the children so they can respond to the beliefs of the creed and the prayers of the faithful.
Children take home a drawing/craft activity that will help them tell their parents what they have done during their lesson, encouraging children to share the story with their parents. Materials are based on Scripture stories.
Members of the Children’s Liturgy Team need to have the ability to work with children and have the ability to share their faith and understanding of the readings in a meaningful way that will encourage children’s faith to grow.
It would be helpful to have experience in working or parenting children. Your gift of time to this ministry would be approximately 2 hours twice per school term and attending workshops as required.
ALTAR SERVERS & ACOLYTES
Altar Servers are young boys and girls who come to assist the priest and deacons during the Mass. Servers must be in Year 3 or higher and be a member of Holy Family Parish. Training must be completed before they can serve.
Acolytes enhance the quality of liturgical celebrations by taking specific roles in liturgical processions and by serving the priest at Mass and other liturgies. There is Diocesan and Parish training for acolytes. Should a member of the parish wish to become an acolyte, please contact Father Andrew.
EXTRAORDINARY EUCHARISTIC MINISTERS
Extraordinary Eucharistic Ministers share the body and blood of Christ with their fellow worshipers in the assembly.
Ministers must be fully initiated Catholics. These people must have a willingness to be of service to the community founded in the love of God. You begin by writing a letter to the Priest, giving some background information about yourself and why you want to become an extraordinary Eucharistic Minister. When approved, you then attend a Diocesan training workshop to receive a Commission from the Bishop. There is a renewal of your Commission from time to time, according to Diocesan Policy. All Eucharistic Ministers are scheduled according to their Mass preferences and may serve as much as they like according to needs and their availability.
To enhance our choirs and worship experience, organists and instrumentalists are most important. Any member of our community who is able to play a musical instrument is always welcomed.
To be part of the musical team will involve practices and performances at weekend Masses and special events. This lay ministry is open to any member of our parish community who has had experience in playing a musical instrument.
LECTORS / READERS
Lectors/Readers proclaim the Word of God at Sunday Masses and for special liturgical celebrations. This ministry aims to actively involve parishioners in ceremonies/celebrations through the prayerful and powerful proclamation of the Word of God. A Reader/Lector must be a person of faith and devotion to God’s Word and be a competent reader.
Lectors/Readers are responsible to become as familiar as possible with the passage they are to read; to read with imagination in order to feel and allow the congregation to feel the emotion of the text; to show the skills of public speaking — a good voice, clear diction, proper breathing, sufficient eye contact, proper posture and effective use of the microphone.
If you would like to be a lector please let us know and training will be provided.
SACRAMENT OF BAPTISM FOR ADULTS — RCIA
RCIA stands for the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults. This is a faith journey for anyone interested in becoming a Catholic. It is for anyone who has never been baptised, for those of another faith who wish to become Catholic and for anyone who has been baptised Catholic but has not been brought up in the Catholic Faith. For further information, please contact Father Andrew on 0497 190 444.
PASTORAL CARE — HOMEBOUND & HOSPITAL VISITS
The purpose of the ministry is to visit the sick at hospital, nursing homes and those who are homebound at the moment in their life when they need a prayer, or a visit and perhaps the comfort of healing power of the Body of Christ. Every week we visit the sick and elderly people at home or at nursing homes or at hospital. If you have anyone in your family who wishes to receive Holy Communion please ring the presbytery and let us know. All are welcome to celebrate with them and support them.
The Piety Store is located at the front of the Church and is open after all weekend Masses. There is a variety of religious articles, books, crucifixes, Bibles etc. Seasonal items include Christmas cards & gifts for First Holy Communion and Confirmation. Special orders are also provided for items not in the store.
THE CHURCH CLEANERS
The purpose of this lay ministry/group is to clean and prepare the church for weekend Mass. This service is most important in providing an environment that is welcoming, hospitable and spiritual to all who come to Mass. There are cleaning teams of two people or a family. We need more people or families to be involved in this ministry to make things easier for everyone.
Team members aid in the liturgical art/decoration of the church. Their work follows the liturgical seasons.
Catechesis is that particular form of ministry of the word which matures initial conversion to make it into a living, explicit and fruitful confession of faith.
Catechists are a team of parishioners who have completed Diocesan training. The program is age appropriate, creative and contemporary in order that the young person be motivated to grow in knowledge, understanding, appreciation, acceptance and love of the Gospel message. As Catechists we are committed to giving a strong witness of our own faith. As a faith community, we are united in a common purpose of proclaiming the gospel message.
The Fete is a major fundraiser. Money raised from the fete is targeted at some particular project. More importantly, it is wonderful social community day of people of Parramatta.
The Fete offers a variety of entertainment, with many different market-type stalls including multicultural food stalls. For children there are rides, jumping castle and many fun things for them to do. Lots of help is need for this great day and new people and new ideas are always welcome at our fete meetings.