Parish Pastoral Council of Belper with Duffield and Ripley

Published Thu, 20/10/2022 by

Minutes of the meeting held online on

Tuesday 11th October 2022, 7pm

Present:  Father Michael Kirkham, Phil Smith (Chair) Patrick McGuire, Niels Richthof, Kathy Gorman, Julia Dodd, Margaret Kirkham (Minutes secretary)

1   Phil welcomed everyone and opened with prayer.

2  Apologies: Anne Recchia, Susan King, Jason Guidon, Dave Wilkinson, Christine Pope-Hamshaw.

3  Main Business 

To inform members of the developing situation around the proposed closure of St Margaret Clitherow. 

  • An alternative view to the diocesan plan that St Margaret’s should close was voiced  at a recent meeting of the Derby Deanery. Discussion took place as to whether the Derby priests would offer support should such an objection be raised with the diocese. It was agreed not to follow this up.
  • St Margaret’s is a Chapel of Ease for Belper and as such does not have the same standing as a parish church. It is important that the Catholic community of Duffield and surrounding area be served and all PPC members agreed it is important that all the faithful in Duffield remain part of the parish.
  • The proposed closure, together with the joining together with Ripley has bounced the parish into looking ahead. A long-term plan is needed possibly of five – ten years, together with medium and short-term plans. 
  • Fr Michael offered to give a proposed outline for the future at the next PPC meeting. This would give a very broad overview and would provide a starting point for a strategy group to work from but without being prescriptive. 
  • Such a strategy group has been difficult to assemble but now with a different remit, people are more likely to come forward.
  • Proposals from the strategy group recommending changes to the parish’s existing church plant need the approval of the parish priest, once he has listened to the advice of the PPC.  It would be his responsibility then to bring them before the Council of Priests, which exists to advise the Bishop.

4   Action to be taken

  • Fr Michael to provide the proposed overview for the next PPC meeting.
  • Fr Michael to contact the Vicar General updating him on the plans for developing the parish (if this is ratified by the PPC)
  • Phil to speak at all Masses following this meeting (15th/16th October 2022) informing parishioners of the decision. 

Support for the proposals were received via email from members not present (Anne, Christine and Dave).

The meeting closed with prayer.

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