Parish Councils are a great idea in Parishes only if they are democratic and have a wide selection of parishioners elected to them.
They are totally useless if they have ONLY members hand picked by the Parish Priest all of whom are friends and close associates and can be relied upon to be 100% YES men and women for absolutely anything the Parish Priest wants to do in his Parish.
This means between Parish Council Meetings the Parish Priest meets with his nearest and dearest confidantes in the Parish and together huddled in the coffee dock or elsewhere sit and outline and decide what 'they' are going to do and when 'they' go in to the meetings the decisions have already been made and nobody disagrees or stands up to anything.
All has already been decided and everyone is persuaded (should they have doubts) that it is the best thing to do by the PP who is a trained psychotherapist and able to manipulate the masses.
Therefore with the guarantee of THE CHOSEN ONES personally hand picked by the Parish Priest everything goes his way.
Those who want to be on the Council and are 'not favoured' as being one of HIS chosen few are not considered.
When the first Council was up and running and one of the members got into a legal dispute with the Parish Priest he had the POWER TO DISSOLVE the Parish Council as the only way to get rid of the member because he had no legal basis to demand that she step down.
He tried that tack for a full 5 months and abandoned all those meetings from October 2005 to February 2006 because he knew the disputed member, on the instructions of her legal team, was going to attend.
Imagine it - PP like a spoilt child says "I am not getting my way - removing a member - so nobody is having a meeting for 5 months - each meeting was cancelled within the hour of its start when it was confirmed the "unwanted" member would be attending.
For this to go on for 5 months would be unheard of in a "normal" Parish with a "normal" Parish Priest but then nothing about this Parish is "Normal" in the true sense of the word.
Is that the sign of a BULLY - you do not get your own way so you cancel the whole thing?
The person dismissed did the Minutes for the meetings for the 18 months the Council was in existence and knows for a fact these Minutes that should have been returned to Archbishop's house were not returned.
If they were ever returned I can guarantee without any doubt that the last meeting was heavily doctored and that it would be backed up by all the yes men and women present none of whom (and there were 18 of them there present) would say a word against the Parish Priest regarding his decisions.
Therefore some Parish Councils like the one in our Parish made up of personal contacts and those that can be useful in networking to the Parish Priest should be disbanded by Archbishop Diarmuid Martin but of course he never listens to any complaints of what is going on in this Parish Our Lady Queen of Peace Bray.
One member of the Council from Day 1 is not even a Parishioner in this Parish and she was brought on to the new Council as well as being an original member and her husband is a member of another Parish group although both are officially Parishioners of Holy Redeemer.
This in spite of the fact that Church going members from 'within' the Parish were rejected as members and dismissed.
What a sham and a sorry excuse for a Parish.
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