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Friday, 29 April 2022 09:58

Preparation and Consultation for Sandhurst Mission and Pastoral Council

Banner OurLadyGoodCounsel


A key recommendation in the 2020 Go Forth Review of the Diocese was that the Bishop Shane establish a Diocesan Mission and Pastoral Council (DMPC) to support him to “operate in a strategic and collaborative way, drawing on the best possible advice of lay people and clergy for delivery of the Church’s mission.” (Go Forth Report).


When established, the Council will support synodal governance in the Diocese through a structure that builds co-responsibility and discernment in leadership and decision making. It will strengthen our capacity to operate in a strategic and collaborative way, by drawing on the best possible advice of lay people and clergy for pursuing the Church’s mission. 

Council Membership
The Sandhurst Mission and Pastoral Council (SMPC) will comprise of 16 members, which will include the Bishop as President, the Vicar General (ex officio), and from each of the three deaneries, one clergy member and three lay members. 
Up to two members will be selected by the Bishop ex officio. 
Membership will be for a term of three years.
Each member is to be a representative of the Diocese and not of the parish, deanery, region, or agency from which they come.

Our Lady of Good Counsel
  • The process of establishing the SMPC will commenced on 27 April 2022, on the Feast Day of Our Lady of Good Counsel, the Patron Saint of our Diocese. 

  • Members of the SMPC will be announced on the Feast Day of Our Lady of Good Counsel in 2023.

Preparation and Consultation 
pdf Preparation and Consultation Plan (2.65 MB) has been developed by the Diocese’s Mission and Pastoral Life Team and is available on the Diocesan website.

On Sunday 26 July Bishop Shane Mackinlay commissioned two Chancery staff members with the task of facilitating preparation and consultation throughout the Diocese. They are:
  • Dr Chris Cotter, Director of Mission and Pastoral Life, and 

  • Ms Ruth Lawlor, Sandhurst Youth Ministry Coordinator.
Preparation and Consultation Meetings

Chris and Ruth aim to visit every parish in Sandhurst to facilitate preparation and consultation meetings.  The meetings are an integral part of a ‘Listening and Dialogue’ process and will provide an opportunity for participants to ask questions about the SMPC and to provide input. 
The Preparation and Consultation Meetings (P&C Meetings) are designed to inform, prepare, and consult the people of God across the diocese about the Sandhurst Mission and Pastoral Council. 
The meetings will run for 90 minutes and provide information about what the SMPC is, and why it is important for our diocese, using the ‘Listening and Dialogue’ process from the first phase of the Plenary Council. 
De-identified collective feedback and questions from the P&C Meetings will be provided to Bishop Shane and help inform the Statutes of the Mission and Pastoral Council. 


Students and staff at our schools and colleges will also participate in P&C Meetings which have been adapted to meet their needs.   

Timeline for Preparation and Consultation Meetings 
July – August 2022: North-Eastern Deanery
All Parish communities of the North-East Deanery to have held a P&C meeting.  Commencing with one at Sacred Heart Church, Wodonga 6.00 p.m. Wednesday 27 July. 
September – October: Goulburn Deanery
All parish communities of the Goulburn Deanery to have been consulted. 
November- December: Western Deanery
All parish communities  of the Western Deanery to have been consulted. 
For information about when the P&C Meeting will be held in your parish check your parish bulletin and Sandhurst social media. 
15 February 2023 - Diocesan Assembly, in Shepparton. 
10 March 2023 - expressions of interest close. 
24 March 2023 - Members of the SMPC announced. 
4 April 2023 - Members of the SMPC commissioned (Chrism Mass). 
27 April 2023 - the first meeting of the SMPC (Feast of Our Lady). 
Prayer Cards 

Printed Prayer Cards have been distributed to parishes. 

pdf D (831 KB) pdf ownload a digital version of the prayer card (831 KB) pdf . (831 KB)


pdf Download the Preparation and Consultation Plan. 

(2.65 MB)

More information will be made available with each stage of the preparation and consultation process.