A brighter life with God. Take a moment to reflect on this statement. What feelings are ignited within you when you hear this? What does this look like to you now and in your future? How can this concept be incorporated more fully into every day of your life?
God’s love, compassion, and forgiveness are powerful forces in our lives, which allow us to move forward in positive and life-affirming ways. For those who already have a personal relationship with God, working towards developing deeper and even more meaningful aspects of our faith could be the focus. If you have not yet taken the opportunity to connect with God, now may be the perfect time to learn what God is all about and how his presence in your life can lead to experiences powered by love and joy.
God embodies love. Love heals. It’s very simple and very true. Making someone’s day brighter in some way expresses love, sending healing energy to both the recipient and reverberating back to the giver. It’s a win-win situation. At St. Agnes Parish, we believe that if each of us extends kindness towards others the ripples in the water of love and acceptance will reach far beyond our Parish. As light spreads into our community, seeds are planted to encourage healing changes in hearts and minds. Even small positive actions may have a huge effect. When the Holy Spirit is at work in your life, miraculous things can occur for you and those you love.
Background St. Agnes Parish joined the Divine Renovation Network more than 3 years ago. The Network is a global organization of member parishes around the Globe that are striving for transformation into healthy, vibrant parishes with a mission. The Network is focused on (1) Evangelization through outreach and mission (2) the Holy Spirit and (3) Parish Leadership. The Divine Renovation Network was founded by St. Benedict’s Parish in Halifax.
An early recommendation from the Network to Fr. James Panikulam, priest of St. Agnes Parish was to establish a Senior Leadership Team of 3 to 5 parishioners, each with a specific skill set. Collectively these individuals would have a balance of strengths that assist the pastor in thinking through decisions to transform the parish from maintenance mode to missionary mode.
Provide strategic direction for parish renewal, mid-term to long term
Build support for the pastor’s vision for the parish.
Develop and build support for the brand promise
Provide continuity in processes and connectivity throughout the parish
Address current issues and recommend solutions, at the pastor’s request.
Meetings The Team meets with Fr. James twice each month.
MembersSkill Sets/Experience Kim CoursolleLiaison with youth groups, Alpha Cindy JarvelaParish Council leadership and ministry relationships Brian KtytorStrategy, change agent, leadership development Rob ZubackCommunications, marketing, engagement
Collectively they are strategic in their thinking, relationship builders, and can execute ideas to make things happen. This is a well-rounded team that is unified in its commitment to the pastor’s vision.
St. Agnes Parish Council
Parish Council typically meets monthly, September to June, with meetings led by the Council Chair and the Pastor who is Council President.
St. Agnes Parish Council is a group of 8 to 10 parishioners appointed by the Pastor to serve for two-year terms.
Mandate Parish Council is accountable to the Pastor for the following mandate:
Advise on and validate, the Pastor’s vision, mission, and overall strategy for the Parish.
Coordinate, align, support and monitor the implementation of strategies, programs and initiatives throughout the Parish that effectively and efficiently advance the Pastor’s vision, mission and overall strategy.
Inform, validate, and support the Pastor’s vision, mission, and strategy.
Work towards a healthy balance of five key pillars in our Parish; these are Worship, Evangelization, Discipleship, Fellowship and Ministry.
Lead and coordinate ministry annual operational plans in alignment with the Parish vision.
Provide opportunities of leadership development for parish leaders.
Coordinate one-year and three-year plans at the ministry/program level, and integrate plans where effective/efficient.
Ensure there is a succession plan for Council members and the Chair.
Assume accountability for a specified standard of performance.
Build teams within Parish Council’s membership.
Counsel and coach ministry leaders in attaining ministry goals.
Meet Our Team
The individuals listed below have dedicated their time and talents to ensure that St. Agnes Parish is the best that it can be for our congregation.
Fr. James Panikulam
The Parish Finance Council is appointed by the Parish Pastor as his advisory partner on Parish financial affairs.
The Council follows Christian principles of stewardship, fosters a sense of ownership of the Parish and the Diocese, assists in setting financial priorities, and making decisions according to best practices.
Each member brings expertise that will assist in attaining a high degree of efficiency and effectiveness.
Duties and Responsibilities:
Develop and maintain accurate financial records for income, expenses, and payroll while following government regulations ;
Prepare an annual budget of income and expenditures;
Review and monitor the budget regularly and report to the Parish;
Meet at least quarterly and maintain accurate records of their proceedings.
St. Agnes Finance Council Members:
Fr. James Panikulam
Phil Jarvis, Chair
Marcel Gagnon, CPA, CA
Janice Baker, Bookkeeper/Secretary
Team Leader: Phil Jarvis, Chair
Team Leader: Karl Schulzki
The Property Council is the steward of the overall church facility. This includes the church, rectory, garage, parking and grounds.
Council members ensure that all parts of the facility are well maintained and comply with building code standards, including electrical, heating and plumbing, as well as fire code requirements and health & safety regulations.
They identify needed repairs or replacements, obtain quotes on purchases of parts and labour, and determine the best option to effectively address the issues.
They are also responsive to physical plant needs identified by parishioners and our ministries.
Before moving forward on projects, large or small, the Council ensures they liaise with the Finance Council, Parish Council, or parishioners. Although they are authorized to recommend the best course of action, the parish priest makes the final decision.
St. Agnes is fortunate to have many parishioners with a variety of skilled trades who often generously donate their time to parish work projects. Often, it is the Property Council members themselves who take on the projects as their way of donating to the well-being of our beautiful and functional parish.
Communications Advisory Council
The Communications Advisory Council is creating a strategy that builds on the St. Agnes vision, brand promise, and culture. This Advisory Council is currently developing a plan that includes best practices, templates, audience segmentation, and protocols. These will help parish groups communicate their messages internally and externally in a coordinated, effective way.
The Council will also work with a team of parishioners on a variety of communication mediums including the website, social media platforms, newsletters, and will encourage measurements of audience response to monitor effectiveness.
Team Leader: Rob Zuback
St. Agnes Parish 1019 Brown Street Thunder Bay, ON P7E 2L7
Office Hours: Tuesday to Thursday, 9:00 am until 4:00 pm