Diocesan Pastoral Council
The Diocesan Pastoral Council evolved from the first Diocesan Assembly held in 2013, when Bishop McKenna announced the establishment of a Diocesan Assembly Council. The Assembly Council was to advise the Bishop on the evaluation and possible implementation of ideas that had emerged to date in the Assembly process. It had the responsibility of advising him on the next steps in this process: including when, where and in what form another gathering might be held in two to three years' time.
Over the next few years, the Assembly Council held various events and met regularly to further the objectives of the original Assembly. From this process, the Diocesan Pastoral Council was conceptualised and the 48 member Council was commissioned by Bishop McKenna at Mass in the Cathedral on Sunday 30 October 2017, as part of the annual Assembly and closing celebrations of the Diocese's Sesquicentenary. The Assembly saw the gathering of representatives from 16 of our 17 parishes - now members of the newly formed Diocesan Pastoral Council (DPC) - the first under the leadership of Bishop McKenna. They were joined by other appointed members, including the Vicar General, priests, deacons, religious and members of the Chancery/Centacare/CEO staff.
The Diocesan Pastoral Council is an advisory body to Bishop McKenna on pastoral matters, aiming to improve and ensure the sustainability of the Diocese's future. Its six workgroups, established by the Bishop, include: Hearing and Proclaiming the Word of God; Worshipping God in Prayer and Sacrament; Building a Community of Love and Service; Participation of Indigenous Catholics; Participation of Young Catholics; or The Domestic Church: Marriage and Families.
These six groups work together to progress matters in our Diocese that concern their particular apostolate and each reports to the Bishop. Each group has a Convenor and these six people meet regularly with the Bishop and ex-officio members, forming a Steering Committee.
The Diocesan Assembly is now the annual gathering of all members of the DPC; with the real work of the Council happening in the workgroups during the year. Profiles of the members of the Diocesan Pastoral Council can be found here.
Details of DPC events are available on the Diocesan Calendar.