Parish Finance Council
Canon 537 introduces the Parish Finance Council as a mandated body having an advisory and consultative role with the pastor. Canon 537 says, “Each parish is to have a finance council which is regulated by universal law as well as by norms issued by the diocesan bishop; in this council the Christian faithful, selected according to the same norms, aid the pastor in the administration of parish goods with due regard for the prescription of canon 532.” Every parish therefore is required to have a Parish Finance Council, both by adherence to the Code of Canon Law and by local norms issued by the diocesan bishop. To be effective the Parish Finance Council should meet regularly with specific agendas and should have access to all the relevant financial information and policies of the parish.
The Finance Council works closely with the pastor, who is accountable to the diocesan bishop for the administration and stewardship of the temporal goods of the parish. The pastor, according to Canon Law, has among his responsibilities, the responsibility for parish financial and temporal management. The Parish Finance Council is a consultative body that assists the pastor in meeting these obligations. While the Parish Finance Council does not have decision making authority, consultation is at the heart of the decision-making process – sharing information, listening, contributing to the discussion, and promoting consensus.
Canon law states that the pastor is obligated to consult the Finance Council on certain matters. Although the pastor is not obliged to follow the recommendations of the Finance Council, the pastor should not act against such advice, especially when there is consensus, unless there is an overriding reason. In other words, the prudent pastor would not ignore the advice of the Finance Council unless there was a serious reason to do so. When acting contrary to its recommendations the pastor should provide an explanation to the Finance Council regarding the reasons for his decision. In order to be effective in their responsibilities as members of the Parish Finance Council, members should have a love for the Church and its mission and develop a thorough understanding of the parish’s mission, goals, people and other resources. The members should have knowledge of diocesan statutes and policies regarding temporal issues and other financial matters. It is the pastor’s responsibility to give the members appropriate background and enrichment so they are able to carry out their duties.
St. Hugh Parish Finance Council
Rev. Robert P. Marchwiany
The Parish Pastoral Council meets every other month.
2019 Meeting Dates:
February 25, 2019; 6:30pm
April 29, 2019; 6:30pm
June 24, 2019; 6:30pm (tentative)
August 26, 2019; 6:30pm (tentative)
October 28, 2019; 6:30pm (tentative)
December with Parish Pastoral Council and other leadership; TBD