The St Ann Parish Finance Council (Council) consists of seven or more voting members, appointed by the Pastor, whose purpose is to “enable the Christian Faithful to assist the Pastor in the administration of the goods of the parish”. The members are chosen by the Pastor, who takes into consideration the talents and skills of the people in the parish who, in part, demonstrate financial/business management skills. As such, it is consultative and advisory to the Pastor. The members serve terms of not less than one year and not more than three years. The Council assists the Pastor in implementing sound internal control practices and any diocesan financial policies, procedures, and guidelines applicable to the business affairs of the parish. The Council is required to meet at least six times per year.
The Council meets on the third Wednesday of each month (less June and July) at 11:30 in the Chapel Conference Room. Lunch is served.
Staff Director – Tom Naile firstname.lastname@example.org
Bookkeeper – Derinda Barnes email@example.com
Chairperson – Christa Welsh firstname.lastname@example.org
Secretary – John Tolan email@example.com
Gail Dorsey firstname.lastname@example.org
Chuck Emling email@example.com
Mitch Provosty MProvosty@RealtyAmericaGroup.com
OF THE PARISH FINANCE COUNCIL
ST ANN PARISH
GULF BREEZE, FLORIDA
c.537: In each parish there is to be a finance council which is governed, in addition to universal law, by norms issued by the diocesan bishop and in which the Christian faithful, selected according to these same norms, are to assist the pastor in the administration of the goods of the parish, without prejudice to the prescript of c.532*.
ARTICLE I: NAME AND LOCATION
The Council established herein shall be known as the Parish Finance Council of St. Ann Catholic Church of Gulf Breeze, Florida. Established date: July 1, 2009
ARTICLE II: COUNCIL PURPOSE
The universal law of the Church requires the presence of a finance council in each parish. The purpose of this is to enable the Christian Faithful to assist the Pastor in the administration of the goods of the parish. Therefore, in accordance with canon 537 (above) the Parish Finance Council of St Ann Catholic Church is now established. The Parish Finance Council (Council) is to be a separate entity from the Parish Pastoral Council, but is to work in collaboration with it. The Council is advisory and consultative to the pastor and is to be directly responsible to him.
ARTICLE III: COUNCIL MEMBERSHIP
3. The Parish Finance Council shall include the following elements:
3.1 Every member of the Parish Finance Council shall be appointed by the Pastor, who should take into consideration the talents and skills of the people in his parish. Persons selected to serve should have demonstrated financial/business management background/skills.
3.1.1 The members of the Parish Finance Council should be animated by a Christian spirit and be deeply conscious of the mission of the parish to promote the works of the apostolate and of charity, especially towards the needy.
*c.532: In all juridic affairs the pastor represents the parish according to the norm of the law. He is to takecare that the goods of the church are administered according to the norm of cc 1281-1288. (See Appendix A)
3.1.2 All members are bound to observe discretion in the confidential matters they treat as members of the Parish Finance Council.
3.1.3 The total membership of the Parish Finance Council shall consist of seven parishioners serving two year terms. In accordance with pastoral discretion up to two members of Our Lady of the Assumption may be added to the council and the council responsibilities expanded to include Our Lady of the Assumption. Four of the terms will expire in even years and three of the terms will expire in odd years.
3.1.4 Within three months of taking possession of the parish, a new pastor is to either confirm the existing appointments or make new appointments to the Parish Finance Council.
3.1.5 Members shall serve for fixed and renewable terms of two years. Members shall be limited to three consecutive two-year terms. Staff personnel are not voting members.
3.1.6 If a member resigns, dies, or is removed, the pastor may appoint another person to complete the balance of the term. However, if the membership falls below three, the pastor must appoint a member to complete the unexpired term.
3.1.7 A member may be removed from the council prior to the expiration of his/her term of office only with the approval of the Pastor.
3.1.8 A copy of these norms shall be distributed to all members of the Parish Finance Council, and theconsultative nature of their role should be made clear to all.
3.1.9 The names of the members are to be communicated to the parishioners at least annually and when the membership changes.
3.2 The Pastor will be the President of the Council, and according to c.532, represents the parish in all financial matters.
3.3 Council members should elect a Chair and Secretary. These officers shall direct the meetings and maintain and file accurate minutes of the proceedings. The Pastor should take part in all proceedings but may direct the Council to proceed in his absence. The Parish Finance Council never acts independently from the Pastor.
ARTICLE IV: MEETINGS AND FUNCTIONS
4. It is the function of the Parish Finance Council to assist the Pastor in the administration of the goods of the parish.
4.1 The meetings should be held on a specified, regular basis, with no fewer than 6 meetings per year. Monthly meetings are encouraged. Council members are expected to attend all meetings. Habitual absence will be grounds for removal from the Council. Notification of the time and place of any but regular meetings shall be by whatever means are prudent and necessary.
4.2 A majority of the members is required to constitute a quorum. On matters requiring the approval of the Bishop, a majority vote of the membership is necessary to constitute consent. Members are expected to abstain from voting on any question on which they may have a potential conflict of interest because of their business or professional relationships.
4.3 Minutes from the previous council meeting must be presented to the assembled council at the beginning of the meeting for adjustments as needed and approval. The minutes should be signed by the Chair and the Pastor indicating approval by the council.
4.4 Whenever necessary or appropriate, the Pastor may invite non-voting parish staff, parishioners and representatives of parish organizations and institutions to speak at meetings. When topics of a confidential nature are on the agenda, all visitors should be asked to leave the proceedings during that deliberation.
4.5 The leadership of the Parish Finance Council will meet on a bi-annual basis with diocesan officials at a workshop for continuing education and formation.
4.6 General Functions: The Finance Council must assist the pastor in implementing sound internal control practices and any diocesan financial policies, procedures, and guidelines applicable to the business affairs of the parish. These may include but are not limited to the handling and depositing of offertory collections and the proceeds of any and all fund-raising activities or events, the preparation of the payroll, and the issuance of checks to suppliers and others.
4.6.1 To establish, review, and coordinate the parish annual budget with input from the Parish Commissions and in accordance with the goals set by the Parish Pastoral Council;
4.6.2 To review the financial reports to the Diocese and to formulate the annual report made to the parish community, using the format included in Appendix B.
4.6.3 To review periodically the income and expenditures in light of the annual budget;
4.6.4 To review contracts and agreements;
4.6.5 To encourage support of diocesan fund-raising projects as well as parish campaigns;
4.6.6 To inventory parish assets at least annually and verify that appropriate insurance coverage has been maintained for said assets;
4.6.7 To present an annual budget report to the parish.
4.6.8 Annually (if applicable) the Council must verify the cash balances of all parish organizations with bank accounts.
4.6.9 The Pastor must present the periodic parish financial review and risk assessment and/or audit reports as issued by the Finance Office or independent accountants to the council; have the council acknowledge the report; and seek the council’s assistance in implementing any recommendations contained therein.
4.7 Special Functions: The Pastor is to consult with the Parish Finance Council in order to perform the following acts of financial administration:
4.7.1 To institute parish financial campaigns, drives, or systems of special collections.
4.8 Special Functions Requiring Approval from the Bishop: The Pastor is to consult with the Parish Finance Council in order to perform the following acts of financial administration. Due to the extraordinary nature of these acts they also require either the signature of the Bishop or his approval in writing:
4.8.1 Capital project, construction or purchases that would cost $10,000 or more. (A project cannot be broken down to smaller components to avoid this authorization);
4.8.2 Major renovations or repairs of $10,000 or more;
4.8.3 Any sale of parish assets valued at greater than $10,000;
4.8.4 Rental/lease of parish-owned property in any amount;
4.8.5 Incurring indebtedness for operational needs that exceed a total of $10,000; (This includes leases of copiers, etc where the aggregate value of the stream of payments over the lifetime of the lease exceeds $10,000.)
4.8.6 Acceptance of a restricted gift in any amount; (This is to ensure the restriction imposed by the donor in no way reflects negatively on the diocese.)
4.8.7 Bank accounts of any kind and for any amount outside of the single operating (checking) account required for each parish;
4.8.7 Other functions deemed appropriate by the pastor.
ARTICLE V: RELATIONSHIP WITH THE PARISH COUNCIL
5.0 Recognizing that the Parish Finance Council and the Parish Pastoral Council are distinct consultative bodies within the parish, good communication between the two is important for the wellbeing of the parish. To ensure a free flow of ideas and to maintain an open communication, the Chair of the Parish Finance Council, during the first meeting of the fiscal year, will designate a Council member as liaison with the Parish Pastoral Council. This member will attend Parish Council meetings in a non-voting, but consultative, capacity and be available to the Parish Council for financial matters. The Parish Council is expected to do likewise in appointing a non-voting member to the Parish Finance Council.
ARTICLE VI: RULES OF ORDER
6.1 The Parish Finance Council shall make no legislation affecting the duties and responsibilities of any Commission without first consulting that Commission.
6.2 Roberts’ Rules of Order (Revised) shall govern the manner in which all Council meetings are conducted in all cases where such are applicable.
ARTICLE VII: AMENDMENTS
7.1 Amendments to the Constitution may be proposed in writing at any regular meeting of the Parish Finance Council by any member of the Council. Amendments may be submitted in writing to the Council members by members of the parish for consideration for adoption.
7.2 Upon proposal and after deliberation or discussion of any suggested amendments to the Constitution, a simple majority vote of the Council may pass the suggested amendment to the second reading, which shall take place at the next regular meeting of the Finance Council, and after all absent Council members have been notified in writing of the text of the proposed amendment. Following the second reading, a vote of ¾ of the voting members of the Council shall ratify adoption of the amendment, and it shall be in effect at the next regular meeting, unless effect is stipulated for immediate observance or otherwise.
ARTICLE VIII: COMMISSIONS ASSISTING THE FINANCE COUNCIL
8.1 The Council shall call on the following non-voting commissions for assistance and advice: Worship, Christian Education, Stewardship, Christian Service, Hospitality and Youth. As noted in Article V, the Finance and Pastoral Councils shall interact as necessary for mutual support, with the staff providing non-voting support. Direct and specific input from the Stewardship Commission is expected.
8.2 Each Commission shall designate a member to respond to Finance Council requests for information and assistance.
8.3 The Council may appoint special committees as required. The Pastor shall be a member of all committees (or name a delegate).
ARTICLE IX: DISTRIBUTION
9.1 A copy of this Constitution shall be made available to all members of the parish.