Fr. Tom Egan, Eddie Albert, Ramon Landi, Brian Hunt, Frank Nolan, Cecilia Webb, Clyde Webb, David Clarke, Tina Bolger, Pat Bolger, Hilary Carrasco, Marianne Ahearne, Jackie Reddington, Peter Coleman and Jane Landi.

Joe Sutton, Pat Madigan and Fr. Damian Cassidy.

The meeting started with a prayer.

Minutes were agreed and signed as correct.


BUS STOP.  Eddie has received a reply from Transport for London.  In a nutshell they are allowed to put bus stops wherever they like, but in this case they are planning to move it back by about 15 feet.  This should not be affected by, or affect, the new school gate, but should help with the matter of people turning into the church entrance.

FAIR TRADE STALL.  Mr McGowan has sent an email detailing the current situation.  The stall should go into profit after the next sale.  Eddie has forwarded the email to councillors for information.  The council offered it’s thanks to Michael for the work he is doing with the stall.

CHURCH DECORATION.  Should start in about four weeks time.  The painters have recommended we look at Enfield church for a sample of their work.  They will suggest colours for the walls and for behind the statue, and will do samples.  They use a wooden scaffold, which is easy to move.

There is water coming in over the sanctuary where the flat roof meets the church.  We will ask Chris Fanning about it.  It was repaired about ten years ago.

PAINTING THE HALL.  Ask the painters to quote for the hall whilst they’re in the church.  It was suggested that the lower part of the walls should be “tongued and grooved” (as per the wall under the hatch) but Chris Fanning has suggested that we use a special paint, which is more resistant to the sort of damage that the wall suffers.  The T&G would darken the hall and would probably be quite expensive too.  We would ask them to paint the Big Hall and the entrance, but not the Small Hall.

After the decoration we should hang more notice boards in the Hall and ask people not to stick things on the paintwork.

HALL LIGHTS.  We should replace the lights in the Big Hall so that they take two bulbs rather than three.  It would not affect the light, which is sometimes more than we need and would save energy.

Income over the last quarter is down by about £1,000 on the same period the previous year.  

Christmas and Easter offerings are slightly skewed because both Christmas 07 and Easter 08 are in this quarter, which doesn’t normally happen.  This makes the income for the first quarter disproportionate.  

Expenditure is £7,000 up on the same period last year.  Most of this is the cost of repairing the roof.

Net income for this quarter is £18,000, which is very healthy, and if one adds Third Party and Specific Donations net income the overall balance at the bank has increased from £142,000 to £164,000 in this quarter.

We have recently received two donations: one was a legacy from Ursula Walker, and the other was a donation of £3,500 from a parishioner towards the new benches.

There was a loss of service in April, which lasted about a week.  Currently the average is 74 daily visits.  Eddie keeps it updated and the newsletter is uploaded every week.  Any item for inclusion should be sent to Eddie or the office.  Elizabeth Coleman has offered to keep us informed of events at the World Youth Day in Sydney.

Fr. Damian has offered to arrange a day of Recollection for Readers and Eucharistic Ministers.

The Easter talks went well again – can we have more?  They really need to be based around a theme, eg. Easter, Holy Week, Advent. Can we ask external speakers to come?  It would need to be organized well in advance.

Anna and Mary have been attending Churches Together meetings.  Stations of the Cross was held during Lent in this church.

The Gift Aid claim still has to be sent in.  The Dinner Dance and Christmas Draw went well and raised quite a bit of money – the Dance raised over £2,000.  The Pound a Month draw is still popular although we are always hoping for extra members.

A musical entertainment has been organized for November involving Fr. Damian’s musical brother, with a Rat Pack theme.

BENCH APPEAL.  We will make announcements from the pulpit concerning the costs of the new benches and encouraging parishioners to help if they can/want to.  The total cost is currently £68,000, including tax – variations are caused by the fluctuating exchange rate with the Euro.  Once the order has gone in the rate will be fixed.  We will get some money back on the old benches.

Irish Contract Seating were the cheapest quote.  A sample bench is at the back of the church, the benches will look like those on the altar.  ICS have produced a church plan, which gives all good sight lines.  The benches will be fixed to the ground.  Do we need to pick a colour for the kneelers?

There will be individual chairs in the choir corner.

The minutes of the last meeting suggested that we were going to ask the parish to decide whether or not we should go ahead with the benches.  This meeting made it clear that it is the task of the elected Council to make decisions on behalf of the parish.  In this case, the Parish Council has decided to purchase new benches – the parish will be appealed to for donations in order to pay for them, although the money that we have in the bank is meant for improvements to the fabric of the church and will be used for this project.

Before we place the order we should give the parish more information concerning this project.  Put notices in the newsletter, make an appeal from the pulpit.  ICS will need five months from the order to make up the benches.

Following this discussion the Parish Council agreed to go ahead with the benches project.

There is evidence that someone is smoking in the Gents. toilet.  This is not only a fire risk, but also against the law and we could be fined.  We need to find out who it is and get it stopped.

Our sacramental courses are over for this year.  Bishop Arnold was very impressed with the Confirmation service.  The weather was OK for all our events.  The next RCIA course is being advertised.  The Parish Team meets on Mondays when it can.


SANCTUARY FLOOR.  This has been looked at and we can’t change it for stone or marble, as it would be prohibitively expensive.  We will have to look at replacing the carpet, especially after the painting has been done.

LATIN DANCE CLASS.  We have received £160 so far.  It was asked again if we could send half the proceeds to the Ruth Winston House.  It was suggested that, as a local concern which has recently had some of it’s funding cut by the council, it would be honourable of us to support it.  We don’t necessarily need all the money raised by the dance class.

When, previously, a parishioner asked if we could redirect money from our funds to a third party it was said that we, as a charity, are unable under the Charities Act, to do so.  What would be different in this case?  In the end it was agreed, that as this is Mr Dightmaker’s wish, he should split his proceeds between the Church and the Ruth Winston House.

FAIR TRADE STOCK.  Why has the parish not offered to underwrite the costs of the stall?  Originally Michael seemed happy to support the stall himself and hopes that he will be in profit very soon.  Should we offer to cover the current losses?  Eddie will contact him.

AGM ACCOUNTS.  A summary of the annual accounts needs to be displayed on the notice board before the AGM.

Jackie Reddington thanked the Parish for supporting the sponsored walk around the park in aid of  St. Joseph’s in Hendon.  They hope to raise about £2,000 when all the money is in.  Everyone was very pleased to be able to come back to the Hall for a cup of tea and a chat.

We have two “Special Needs” people serving at Mass now, and many have or are joining in our catechetical programmes.

WINDOW IN THE CHOIR CORNER.  Although Frank has had a look at this and has covered a small hole, there is still a problem with cold air getting in.  

EVENTS AT WESTMINSTER CATHEDRAL.  Can these be advertised in the newsletter, or on the website?  Often they are but there is not always space.  It also depends on how well the information is presented to us in the first place.

The AGM will be on 29th June in the Parish Hall at 7.30 pm.

Next Parish Council will be on September 8th.

Future dates (to be agreed) are    November 10th

    January 12th