New Council of Priests 2019-2022 Killaloe Diocese
Des Hillery – Vicar General
Albert McDonnell – Chancellor
Elected by Pastoral Areas
Pat Larkin (Chairperson)
Elected by Retired Priests
Elected by Priests working outside the diocese and non-incardinated priests in the diocese
Nominated by Bishop
Pat Malone – Safeguarding
Ger Nash – Pastoral Development
Brendan Quinlivan – Communications
Tom Ryan – VF of Abbey Pastoral Area
Ignatius McCormack – St. Flannan’s College
Statutes of the Council of Priests of the Diocese of Killaloe
In accordance with the Code of Canon Law a presbyteral council is to be established in each diocese. The presbyteral council is a group of priests which, representing the presbyterium, is to be like a senate of the bishop and which assists the bishop in the governance of the diocese according to the norm of law to promote as much as possible the pastoral good of the portion of the people of God entrusted to him. (Canon 495) The Council of Priests is regulated by Canons 495-501 of the Code of Canon Law. The Diocesan Bishop has the prerogative to convoke the council, to preside over it (though not necessarily chair its meetings) and to determine the agenda. (Can. 500)
The council is consultative in nature and has no authority to act on its own. The Bishop is to consult it on matters of greater importance and he is obliged to consult it (audito consilio) in matters relating to the following:
- The advisability of a Diocesan Synod (c. 461.1)
- The modification of parishes, e.g., their erection, modification, division or suppression (c. 515.2)
- The determination of the use of offerings of the faithful made on the occasion of parish services and placed in a general fund (c. 531)
- The appropriateness of parish councils (c. 536.1)
- The granting of permission to build a Church (c. 1215.2)
- The granting of permission for a church to be converted to secular purposes for reasons other than its poor condition (c. 1222.2)
- The imposition of a tax for the needs of the Diocese on public juridic persons subject to the bishop; also the imposition of an extraordinary and moderate tax for very grave needs on other juridic persons and on physical persons (c. 1263)
The Bishop may consult the Council of Priests on other issues concerning the Diocese. The Bishop is recommended to take in great account the suggestions of his Council of Priests and to follow those suggestions whenever it is possible. It is up to the Bishop to take his final decision immediately after the consultation or to postpone it, according to what he thinks is the best for the Diocese.
When the Diocesan see is vacant the council ceases to exist, its functions are assumed by the College of Consultors and the new Bishop is to establish a new council within one year.
Article I: Purpose of the Council
The purpose of this Council of Priests shall be:
- To provide for the full and free discussion of all issues of pastoral concern in the diocese.
- To assist the bishop according to the norm of law in his pastoral governance of the diocese.
- To search for and to propose ways and means for effective pastoral ministry with other consultative bodies and with the bishop.
- To be representative of the unity, diversity and needs of the priests to the bishop.
Article II: Membership and Elections
The Council of Priests shall consist of a maximum of fifteen priests who will serve for three years. Its composition will be as follows:
- Five priests elected by the incardinated priests, aged under 75 years, ministering in each of the five electoral areas composed of groups of pastoral areas as listed in the appendix;
- The Vicar(s) General and the Diocesan Chancellor (should that office be held by a priest) shall be ex officiomembers;
- One priest elected from among the priests aged over 75 years who are incardinated or who at the time they reached 75 years held a pastoral appointment in the diocese;
- One priest elected from an electoral college consisting of the non-incardinated priests who hold appointments in the diocese from the bishop and the incardinated priests aged under 75 who minister outside the diocese;
- Priests freely appointed by the Bishop. In appointing members to the Council of Priests, the Bishop should be mindful to ensure that the Council is as representative as possible in terms of age, location and diversity of ministries. While the Bishop is free to appoint members to the Council, he is not required to do so. In making his appointments, the Diocesan Bishop is not permitted to override the provision that “about half” (c. 497.1) the members should be elected.
The following shall have the right of election, both active and passive, in constituting the Council of Priests: (c. 498)
- All secular priests incardinated in the Diocese;
- All secular priests not incardinated in the Diocese and priests who are members of some religious institute or society of apostolic life who reside in the Diocese and who are appointed by the Bishop to exercise some office for the good of the Diocese.
It shall be the responsibility of the senior Vicar Forane, by year of ordination, in each electoral area, as defined in the appendix, to organise the election of that area’s representatives to the Council of Priests.
It shall be the responsibility of the Diocesan Chancellor to organise the election of the representative from among the clergy who have completed their seventy fifth year of age.
The term of office for the Council of Priests shall be three years.
Elected members shall be eligible to serve only two consecutive terms.
Ex-officio members serve by virtue of the office they hold and serve as long as they hold the office. On cessation of their appointment to that office they are replaced on the Council of Priests by the priest who succeeds them.
Appointed members serve at the discretion of the Bishop.
Should a vacancy occur among the elected members, the unexpired term shall be filled by a ballot of the priests from the category in which the vacancy has occurred. This
Article III: Officers
The Officers of the Council shall be the President, the Chairperson, the Vice-Chairperson, and the Secretary.
The President of the Council shall be the Bishop. The President shall have the right to call meetings of the Council to preside over meetings of the Council, to place matters of concern on the agenda of the Council, to choose whether or how to promulgate any of the Council’s deliberations.
The Chairperson shall be appointed by the Bishop and shall ordinarily preside over meetings of the Council and shall be the chief executive officer of the Council.
The Vice-Chairperson shall be appointed by the Bishop. The Vice-Chairperson shall assume the duties of the Chairperson in his absence.
The Vice-Chairperson and Secretary shall have such duties as the Council prescribes for them.
The Secretary shall be elected by all voting members of the Council for the term of office of the Council. The election is to take place at the first meeting of the new Council.
No member shall hold more than one office or be re-elected to the same office for more than two consecutive terms. In the event of a vacancy in an elected office, the Council shall elect an officer to fill the unexpired portion of the term.
The Diocesan Chancellor shall serve as the Bishop’s staff to the Council of Priests.
Article IV: Meetings
The Council shall meet regularly, (at least six times per annum), on an annual schedule to be adopted by the Council. Special meetings may be called by the President or at the requests of any six members with the consent of the President.
A simple majority of the members shall constitute a quorum.
As a norm, the Council shall strive toward consensus and other modes of Christian decision-making with the due regard for the provisions of Canon Law in specific cases.
Article V: Committees
The Council shall have an Executive Committee and such other standing or special committees as shall be necessary to carry on the work of the Council.
The Executive Committee shall consist of the Officers of the Council and the Diocesan Chancellor. This committee shall prepared the agenda for meetings of the Council, see to the timely publication of minutes of the Council’s meetings to the entire presbyterate, and shall coordinate where necessary the work of the other committees. The Executive Committee shall not have to power to act in the name of the Council except as specifically authorised by the Council.
Other Committees may be created by the Council and shall have the rights and duties that Council shall from time to time specify.
Article VI: The College of Consultors
The College of Consultors of the Diocese shall be appointed by the Bishop from among the voting members of the Council of Priests. The College of Consultors shall consist of not less than six and not more than twelve members. (c. 502) The College of Consultors shall operate with its own statutes.
Article VII: Adoption of Statutes and Amendment to Statutes
Upon the approval of the Bishop these statutes shall take effect.
These statutes may be amended by a vote of two-thirds of the members of the Council, provided that, prior to the voting, the amendment has been submitted in writing at a previous meeting of the Council and published in the minutes. To take effect any amendment must be approved by Bishop.
These Statutes are approved by the diocesan Bishop this 23rd day of May, 2019.
Most Reverend Fintan Monahan,
Bishop of Killaloe
Fr Albert McDonnell
The five electoral areas, referred to above, which shall each elect a member to the Council shall be composed of the following pastoral areas:
Electoral Area 1
- Cois Fharraige (Cross, Carrigaholt, Kilkee, Doonbeg)
- Inis Cathaigh (Kilrush, Killimer, Cooraclare, Kilmihil)
- Radharc na nOileán (KilmurryMcMahon, Coolmeen, Kildysart, Ballynacally)
- Croícha Callan (Miltown Malbay, Mullagh, Kilmaley, Kilnamona)
Electoral Area 2
- Imeall Bourne (Corofin, Ruan, Crusheen, Tubber)
- Abbey (Ennis, Clarecastle, Quin, Doora-Barefield)
- Tradaree (Shannon, Newmarket-n-Fergus, Sixmilebridge)
Electoral Area 3
- Inis Cealtra (Bodyke, Feakle, Killanena, Mountshannon, Ogonnoloe, Scariff)
- Ceanntar na Lochanna (Tulla, O’Callaghan’s Mills, Broadford)
- Scath na Sionnaine (Castleconnell, Clonlara, Killaloe)
Electoral Area 4
- Odhran (Nenagh, Portroe, Puckane, Silvermines, Templederry, Youghlarra)
- Ollatrim (Cloughjorday, Dunkerrin, Toomevara)
- Cois Deirge (Borrisokane, Lorrha, Terryglass)
Electoral Area 5
- Brendan (Birr, Kilcolman, Kinnity, Shinrone)
- Cronan (Roscrea, Kyle & Knock, Bournea)