Minutes of Steering Committee,

Winchester Area VOTF, April 24, 2003, 7.30 p.m.


In attendance: Bob Morris, Anna-Marie Ferraro, Frank Brophy, Anne Harris, Paul Kellen, Jeanne Martin, Mary Lou Burke, Jan Dolan, Louise Aleo, Suzy Nauman, Clare Keane.


The Opening Prayer was offered by Anne Harris.


Financial Report:  Anna-Marie reported that the account balance is $510. She also reported that donations to St. Eulalia's which will be presented on WAVOTF's first anniversary currently total $1,645. The deadline for donations is May 12. Bob suggested that another email be sent to the membership to stimulate further donations.


April 26 Potluck Dinner for Priests: There was discussion of the responses from invited priests.  Frank pointed out that Svea Fraser's group has combined their small group "Priest Sounding Boards" with potluck dinners, and that this setting might be more palatable to priests than a large gathering.


May 3 Parish Voice Gathering: Bob presented a tentative agenda for that day. He will have 2 minutes early in Saturday's Lay Council meeting agenda to urge other Parish Voices to send representation. Among topics discussed were the addition of a breakout group relating to the direction VOTF should take at this juncture: how to keep Boston's VOTF distinct from VOTF Central: and presenting the questionnaire responses in the Parish Successes section. Possible speakers were identified and they will be approached. Also Suzy will speak on VOTF National, and the Priests' Support Group will send a representative to speak. Some of the committee volunteered to be facilitators or reporters for the breakout groups.


April 28 and May 5 Meetings: Globe reporter Christine McConville plans to attend these meetings. Both meetings will have regular breakout sessions. On April 28, Jan will report on the Lay Council meeting, Anna-Marie wants to talk about Parish Councils, and Christina will be asked to comment on the success of the Priests' Potluck, and the upcoming focus on due process issues. Mary Lou will do an education piece on April 28. on May 5 there will be a discussion of the Parish Voices Gathering on May 3, a discussion of the Who We Are document (formerly the Statement of Beliefs), and the meeting will end with the rosary in church, since it will be the month of Mary and the rosary. Bob asked attendees to call people from other parishes who had volunteered to spread the word about meetings to members in their parishes.

Fr James Keenan will speak at the May 12 meeting.


Other items: Paul requested written detailed responses to Mary Gail Frawley-O'Dea's presentation. In light of prolonged speeches following the presentation, it was felt that the Guidelines for Speakers should always appear on the agenda sheet, even if the speaker is not deemed to be controversial.

Jan reported that Jim Post and Jim Mueller will launch a national campaign to end the bans on new VOTF chapters meeting on church property.

The group discussed the planned June 7 Conference, and the allotment of tickets per chapter. If our chapter receives only 5 tickets, how should they be distributed? All felt that Bob should attend, and that other tickets should be assigned by lottery. It is possible that we will receive more than 5, since Ann Carroll's letter promised more for larger and more active affiliates. Tickets will be $15 each.

The talent night, planned as a fundraiser for survivors on May 30 from 7:30-10 p.m., is taking shape. Several performers have offered their services, and donations for raffles are being solicited.


The next Steering Committee meeting will be held on May 14.


For the Closing Prayer, the group prayed the Our Father.