Guidelines & FAQs

Church Music

Church music is a necessary and integral part of the Solemn Liturgy.

  • Please understand the central theme before you chose the hymns for the Liturgical Celebration. Music and hymns are a single reality with the celebration, allowing the faithful to enter into and to interiorize the Divine Mysteries. The church music therefore is contributing to prayerful, communitarian and meditation, and not to lead to distraction.

  • Do not modify or change either the pattern or the words from the Sacred Liturgy of the Holy Eucharist, viz. Gloria, Holy Holy Holy Lord....The Universal Church follows one model and we are a part of this Church. The hymns chosen at the religious functions must enhance the awe and respect due to the Sacred Mystery being enacted.

  • Always remain alert towards the Altar. When you are leading the congregation with the Entrance Hymn, do not continue with the hymn when the Celebrant is ready to begin the Mass at the Altar. However, if incensing is taking place at the Altar, then you are advised either to continue with the same hymn or play the piano/musical instrument till the Celebrant is ready.

  • Please sing at least the response for Responsorial Psalm. Notes are already provided to you. If, for any reason, it is not taken from the Lectionary (current day's Reading), the Responsorial Psalm MUST LINK with Readings and Gospel.

  • 'Great Amen' to be sung only during Solemnities, Feasts, Memorials and special occasions and not on ordinary Sundays/week-days.

  • Please announce the Hymn No. loudly and clearly. You are requested not to tune your musical instruments during the Mass.

  • Indian dance is allowed only as an entrance rite on special occasions, while aarti can be performed at Mass. When aarti is being done, it is much more meaningful if the whole congregation accompanies the act in song, rather than just listening passively.

  • Offertory Hymn can be sung only if there is Offertory Procession.

  • Children and Youth - Special care must be taken in the preparation of the Mass for Children and Youth. From their tender years they should be introduced to the sacredness of the Liturgical ceremonies and taught the value of silence and meditation. The choice of hymns must be conducive to making the liturgy meaningful and impressive. Where the performance of skits is deemed useful to stress the theme of the Mass, they should be performed before the Sacred Liturgy begins.

(Guidelines taken from Sacrosanctum Concilium - (Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy - of Second Vatican Council) and Diocesan Pastoral Centre, Bandra, Mumbai)

Choir Ministry

Introduction

You have been asked to serve in this ministry because God has bestowed on you the gift of song. You have an opportunity to use this gift to present the Word of God to the community in a way that can move the hearts of those who hear it; and to lead the singing of the assembly, because "singing together in church expresses so well the sacramental presence of God to his people."

Since it is an important ministry, you have a responsibility to prepare and properly dispose yourself to present the Word of God and to lead the song of the people with the utmost dignity and respect. Proper formation of our ministers is important. How we worship conveys the sacredness of what we believe in the mystery that is taking place in the liturgy. This also helps create the appropriate environment of prayer for all.

These guidelines have been prepared to assist all ministers in performing their role in a prayerful, reverent and consistent way. These guidelines are not intended to represent an exhaustive list.

  1. Structuring The Choir Group

    • Choir Heads need to maintain a file about the details about their choir group. Such as:

      • List of the members of choir

      • Schedule of the choir practice

      • Attendance register of the choir practice

      • Choir member's commitment form

      • Account statement of the choir fund

    • The maximum number for church choir group will be decided by the Parish Priest along with the Priest in charge of the Choir in consultation with the Liturgy committee, considering the suggestions from the various choirs, space available in church and needs of the church.

    • The church provides enough space, time and equipment so that each choir may have its practice. Therefore each church choir needs to have its practice only in the church premises not in any other place. (This would help in prevention of regionalisation of choirs/making them unique for a particular area and instead give it a more Parish/universal outlook). For availability of space and time the choir head can discuss with the spiritual director of choir.

  2. Scheduling And Serving

    • Having a sufficient number of choir members available to serve at each Mass is an important dimension to creating the prayerful environment for Mass and attending to the spiritual needs of the community gathered. Each choir head is responsible to fulfil assignments or arrange for substitutes if necessary.

    • If you cannot serve for the time assigned, it is your responsibility to find a replacement and keep the priest in-charge of the choir informed about the change.

    • Social conversations to be avoided in the choir area in order to maintain a spirit of prayer before, during and after mass. Use of the mobile phone or any other communication devices is prohibited during the Mass.

    • The Constitution of the Sacred Liturgy of the Second Vatican Council reminds us that the purpose of sacred music is for the Glory of God and the Sanctification of the Faithful. Hence the hymns must be carefully monitored so that it helps the faithful to lift up their hearts to the Lord. Since the Liturgy is common for all Sunday masses, the hymns shall be the same for all masses on a given Sunday. The Liturgy Committee is best equipped to select the hymns for Sunday Masses, and the selection is to be followed by all Choirs.

    • Secular & Gospel songs not to be admitted into liturgy.

    • The basic hymns like 'Lord have mercy, Gloria, Holy Holy (Sanctus)' should be sung in such a manner that the whole congregation participates and the faithful can lift up their hearts to the Lord. A standard set of tunes (4 or 5 options) to be prepared and used for these basic hymns. Whenever a new tune is to be incorporated, the same to be practised at every Sunday mass for a month, before implementing the same in the following month.

    • If a choir wants to take a new hymn, it needs to be taught to the people before the scheduled mass so that all people can join in singing.

    • Choirs are encouraged to use the Projector and the Projection Screen to display the lyrics of the hymns so that all people can participate meaningfully in singing.

    • Church provides facilities for the choir. If choir has any requirement regarding singing in the church it needs to be communicated to the concerned person at the earliest. Hiring the outside sound system by the individual choir is not permitted.

    • Instruments should support, not dominate. Mundane beats to be avoided. The Mass should not be reduced to a rock concert.

    • Cantors should remember that the Church is a place of worship and that they are visually prominent, so appropriate attire should be worn befitting worship of God.

    • Cantors, choirs to lead & accompany the people even in the prayers.

    • Since on-going formation enhances the quality of Church service, cantors and members of all choirs are expected to attend formation programmes planned by the parish.

  3. Choir At Nuptial Mass General Guidelines

    1. The liturgy of the nuptials to be discussed with the priest conducting the Pre-Nuptial Enquiry of the couple.

    2. The hymns should be approved by the priest concerned and should be generally from the Parish Hymnal.

    3. Singing of solos to be avoided as it does not lead to the communitarian spirit of the Mass.

    4. Using popular music (love song/ballads) and favourite songs of the couple to be strictly avoided.

    5. The Entrance of the couple in a procession along with the Celebrants should be accompanied with the Entrance Chant (hymn) and not any popular/secular wedding march or instrumental music.

  4. Guidelines For Choosing Catholic Wedding Music

    1. Is it prayerful? The purpose of any Catholic liturgy, including a wedding liturgy, is to give glory to God and to sanctify (make holy) the worshipers. Your wedding music should reflect that purpose; in other words, it should help the assembly to pray and to give thanks to God for your love. The criteria of prayerfulness is one reason why popular music-including some of the "classic" wedding marches taken from secular operas-is not permitted.

    2. Is it accessible? In other words, will the assembly be able to sing along? In Catholic worship, the assembly (everyone attending the wedding) is not an audience, passively watching events unfold at the altar. Catholic liturgy calls on the assembly to actively participate in the prayer of the Church, including its sung prayer. Doing so is one of the most powerful ways your friends and family can express their love and support for you and your spouse.

    3. Is it beautiful? Beauty is a window onto the divine (Catechism #32), the Church calls for the music used in its worship to be beautiful.

Bulletin

To send matter for the Bulletin

  1. Articles for publication should be sent strictly only by e-mail: h2h.bulletin@gmail.com and to reach the Editorial Board, within the stipulated deadline, as periodically announced at the Parish Weekly Announcements. Hand written copies will not be accepted.

  2. Articles on behalf of Individuals/Cells/Associations/Communities should compulsorily be approved by the Spiritual Director and the Head of the respective Association/Cell/Community, on behalf of whom you are reporting. It will be their sole responsibility to ensure that the Article is factually and morally correct. Please ensure Article submitted for printing consists of an appropriate title, name of the author, name and number of the author’s Community. It is important to also mention the telephone number of the author so that clarification(s), if any, can be easily obtained.

  3. Please ensure Articles are submitted by the prescribed date to avoid disappointment. Articles received post the deadline will be published in the current issue, subject to availability of space. In case of lack of space it will be carried forward to the next issue, subject to its relevance then.

  4. Articles on the Activities held in the Parish are restricted to a maximum count of 500 words.

  5. As much as it is important for Cells / Associations / Communities to report their activities - Heads and Spiritual Directors of Communities / Cells / Associations should encourage their members to contribute Articles to the Bulletin. A maximum of one article per person will be considered per issue.

  6. Kindly note that it will not be possible to entertain any request for change(s) in the Article, once submitted for publication.

  7. The 'Photograph Page'; is to give a visual representation of events and aims to display the variety of activities taking place in the parish, organized by the parishioners of different age groups, Cells, Associations, Communities etc. Photographs of the parish activities sent for publication should be of High definition quality. The discretion to publish the photographs will be the prerogative of the Editorial Team.

  8. Kindly do not submit internet forwards for publication.

  9. The Editorial Team reserves the right to edit or reject Articles as it deems appropriate.

To book ads on the bulletin

  1. Booking of advertisements should be done at the Parish Office by paying the requisite fee within the stipulated deadline as mentioned at the Parish Weekly Announcements.

  2. While booking advertisements, a CD of the advertisement in a vector format with the following file extensions only (jpeg, Pdf, .ai, .eps and .cdr) should be submitted along with a hard copy/(printout) of the same. Word Document will not be accepted.

  3. While sending Artwork by e-mail, kindly mention Payment Receipt Number. A hard copy (printout) of the artwork should also be submitted to the Parish Office.

  4. The Editorial Team will exercise its discretion when publishing any commercially supported content. It reserves the right to reject any promotion it deems to be misleading or controversial.

Publisher and Editorial Team
Heart To Heart
Sacred Heart Parish

Lectors

The eucharist is the source and summit of the life and mission of the church

This divine and ineffable sacrifice is a manifestation of the great mystery of love which is renewed every day on our Altars at Holy Mass - through the ordained ministers, Christ gives His Body and Blood for humanity. We who nourish ourselves from the Eucharist need to see that certain liturgical norms are carefully observed in the celebration of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.

Dear Lector,
You proclaim the Word of God & you are God's partner. Remember, faith comes from hearing; proclaim the Word of God with meaning.


  • Readings to be read from the LECTIONARY ONLY. Prepare yourself spiritually. Go through your READING at least ONCE before Mass and say a prayer that is placed. Do not read from Sunday leaflets or printed sheets. Sunday leaflets are for reference purpose only.

  • Bow to the Altar before you go for the Reading.

  • Do not read the fine print mentioned above the Reading, also do not say '1st Reading' or '2nd Reading' or Chapter or Verse. Begin the Reading with 'A Reading from...' Brief PAUSE (reverent silence) maintained after each reading to be strictly followed - you must pause for 10 seconds (10 counts) before you say 'The Word of the Lord'. Before the Gospel Acclamation, you will say 'Please stand for the Gospel.'

  • Soon after, the first reading, the reader of the second reading is ready in front of the Altar standing and waiting for the first reader and bow together. The second reader proceeds to the lectern and the first reader goes his/her sitting place.

  • After the Psalm do not say kindly repeat please. Just say our response and repeat the response along with the congregation.

  • The Prayer of the Faithful person must come immediately after the Creed.. the lector reading the Prayer of the Faithful is advised to wait at the Lector stand till the Celebrant finishes the prayer.

  • Dress code to be maintained very strictly. Your dress must reflect Christian modesty and sobriety. No sleeveless/short skirts/short tops please

  • All lectors for Sunday Masses, Special Masses and Special Occasions, Weddings, Anniversaries and other occasions except weekday masses must come in procession with the Celebrant at the beginning of the Mass wearing the special capes prepared for Lectors according to the season.

  • Capes should be worn by both the readers as well as by the person reading the Introduction, lector reading the Prayer of the Faithful and person singing the Psalm from the Lector stand.

  • You are not allowed to take the Lectionary outside the Sacristy for any reason what-so-ever. However, you may solemnly carry the Lectionary at the Entrance Procession during Sunday Mass & other solemn Liturgical Celebrations. Please make sure you coordinate with the respective Choir regarding Responsorial Psalm & Acclamation. Remember the page no. of your Reading to avoid confusion when you are on the Altar.

  • The Lector carrying the Lectionary and other readers in the procession, should bow and wait at the side for the main celebrant to go to the Altar and then go up to the Altar and keep the Lectionary on the lectors stand.

  • A Lector is different from a Cantor (Choir). After proclaiming the Word of God from the Altar. (You cannot sing the Psalm or Acclamation from the Lectern). Singing will be done by the Choir from the Choir Microphone and you may join them. You will only recite (read) the verse from the Psalm & Acclamation from the Lectern. you will only read the entire Psalm & Acclamation for daily Mass from the Lectern.

  • Breath deeply (in and out) as you go the Altar. Adjust the mike before you start reading. Be loud, clear and slow. Do not break a phrase but read it completely and then take a pause. Do not use false diction & read with your own accent. Emphasize on words like strength, sovereign, sovereignty, solemn..and lastly don't forget to remain silent before you loudly say 'The Word of the Lord.

  • In case you are unable to do the Reading on the day allotted to you; you are bound to inform the parish office (only in office hours) at least a day in advance. You cannot swap/exchange the Reading with another Lector without the knowledge of the Spiritual Director.

  • Be present at least 10 minutes before the Mass begins. In case you do not show yourself in the Sacristy 7 minutes before Mass begins; your reading will be given away. Please do not grab the lectionary / reading, after it is given to another person.

  • In case there is a special Mass (Associations and cells Mass, youth mass and so on), viz. wedding mass, golden/silver jubilee, death anniversary, etc. kindly be flexible to give away the Reading allotted to you to the respective associations and cells or family members, if requested.

  • For Wedding Masses, the first reader and prayer of the faithful can be done by the couple's side in consultation with the Priest. And the second reading should be done by the lector allotted in regular masses.

  • Compulsory - You will sign against your name in the Lector's sheet kept in the Sacristy before the Mass.

  • Please do not ask or SMS for any special day reading.

  • Lastly, REMEMBER - you are proclaiming the Word of God for the congregation to listen to understand and to pray.

Parish Liturgy Team along with the Parish Pastoral Team takes final decision on the Lectors for all Liturgical services, including Solemnities and High Masses. Every Lector will be given a chance to proclaim the Word of God. Please do not force yourself for Readings. Do not trouble the Pastoral team or contact individual members from the Liturgy Team for Readings.

Parish Priest

Prenuptial & Marriage

Guidelines for the celebration of the Sacrament of Marriage in the Archdiocese of Bombay

The sacrament of Matrimony can be celebrated in the Parish Church of either the bride or the groom. (In our Archdiocese, it is usually celebrated in the Bride’s Parish Church). It could be celebrated in another Church / Shrine / Chapel after obtaining ‘No Objection’ letters from their respective Parish Priests. The date and time of the Nuptial Mass, is to be fixed in consultation with the Parish Priest before making other arrangements like hall bookings, caterers, etc. hence, kindly meet your Parish Priest and discuss the matter with him well in advance. We do not book the Mass exclusively for one couple, i.e. if another couple wants to have their Nuptials at the same Mass, you should be willing to cooperate and make the necessary adjustments. In case you have a close relative / friend who is a priest and you would like him to be the celebrant and / or bless the Nuptials, kindly request the priest doing your papers for permission and do so, well in advance.

For the preparation and celebration of the liturgy, please note the following points:

  • When you fill in your Pre-Nuptial papers with the priests concerned, please discuss the Liturgy with him. Keep in mind that on the Sundays of Advent, Lent, Eastertide, and other major feasts, the liturgy of the day must be followed. On a Sunday in ordinary time, if the nuptials take place during a scheduled Mass, the Liturgy of the day must be followed, but one reading (preferably the Second) may be taken from the selection offered for Nuptial Masses. On weekdays, and on ordinary Sundays, at Masses outside the regular parish schedule, the special Nuptial readings and prayers may be used. A Nuptial Mass on Saturday evening after 5.00 pm, fulfills the Sunday obligation and the choice of texts should be determined accordingly.

  • Preparing a booklet for the service is not necessary. If you do choose to prepare one, please ensure that it is simple and contains the outline of the service and possibly the hymns and responses that need to be included. Please do not print the text of the readings, the prayers, etc. in the booklets, as these should be proclaimed from the Lectionary / Missal and the congregation should listen to them and not follow the text from a booklet. Discuss the liturgy with the priest concerned before finalizing the contents of the booklets.

  • The Readings, Prayers of the Faithful, etc. should be done by trained lectors or people with proven capacity of effectively proclaiming God’s Word. Persons should not be selected merely because they are relatives or have to be “honoured” with a role. Kindly avoid entrusting this responsibility to children. Please find out the parish policy regarding the proclamation of the Word of God before selecting lectors for your Nuptial Mass.

  • Familiarise yourself with the structure of the rite, rehearse it with the priest and memorize the words of the vows, if possible. Remember, these words form the essence of the rite and may not be changed or paraphrased. Please ensure that the two witnesses are at hand and come forward to actually witness the rite. (No Proxy Allowed).

  • The Prayer of the Faithful should be prepared with care. The Intentions should be brief and follow a standard pattern. They should include petitions for the Universal Church, the nation/world, the couple and other local needs. It would be advisable to get the help of qualified members of the Parish Liturgy Team or other competent persons to assist in this task. The Prayer of the Faithful should not be combined with the offertory procession.

  • At the Preparation of the Gifts (formerly referred to as the “offertory”), the bread and wine for the celebration of the Eucharist, may be brought forward. Other gifts that may be presented should be what is required for the needs of the Church and the poor, but not token symbolic items that will be retrieved later. The presentation of gifts is not to be accompanied by a commentary or an explanation. A hymn may be sung as the gifts are brought up.

  • The role of the choir is to facilitate the congregation’s participation. Please avoid commercial or professional choirs that tend to “perform” on these occasions. A song leader is often much more effective in leading the congregation’s singing. The musicians and choristers should have received some liturgical training. The hymns should be chosen from a good liturgical hymnal (such as With Joyful Lips, Celebration or the SNS music sheets). They should reflect the Church’s understanding of the Sacrament, and not be merely sentimental or resemble pop songs. The hymns must be approved beforehand by the Parish Priest / Parish Liturgy Team. The text of the parts of the Mass (Gloria, Holy Holy, Memorial acclamation, Lamb of God, etc.) should correspond with what is found in the Missal (no Interpolations are to be made). If the Nuptials take place during a scheduled Mass or during the Great Seasons (Advent, Lent, Christmastide, Eastertide), the hymns should be in keeping with the liturgy of the day, and not merely reflect the marriage theme. The use of secular songs is totally prohibited at the Nuptial Mass. The musical instruments used are to accompany the singing and should therefore not to be loud, rhythmic or overpowering. They should be played in a style that is in keeping with the nature of the Liturgy.

  • Floral arrangements should be modest and not overdone. They should not impede the approach to the altar, or, restrict movement in the sanctuary or obscure the altar, lectern, etc. the flowers placed in the sanctuary may not be taken away after the celebration. Flowers are not permitted during season of Lent. During Advent, floral arrangement should be restrained and kept to the bare minimum.

  • Photography and video shooting should not spoil the Liturgy or cause any distraction or disturbance or mar the sacredness of the celebration. Only one photographer and one videographer will be permitted. The video shooting will have to be done from a fixed place, even for the entrance procession (It is extremely disrespectful for the videographer / photographer to move up the aisle with his back to the Altar and Tabernacle). Photography / Videography will be permitted at the following moments:a. Entrance; b. The Nuptial Rite; c. The “offertory”; d. Reception of Holy Communion; e. Signing the register …. Photographers and Videographers who violate these rules may be debarred from rendering this service in our Church in future.

  • Please ensure that those participating in the service and especially those who are coming up to the sanctuary for the readings, prayers, hymns etc. are decently attired. Remember, this is a religious ceremony!

  • Please be punctual. If your nuptials are to take place at a scheduled Mass, we will begin the Liturgy at the proper time even if the bridal couple or others of the entourage have not arrived. If the celebration of the Eucharist has commenced, the couple will have to wait in the porch / near the entrance of the Church until after the Gospel proclamation is over. Latecomers to be admitted to the celebration without fanfare and photography / videography associated with the traditional entrance procession.

  • The signing of the register is not to be done on the Altar, but on a table provided for this purpose in the Church or in the sacristy. After Mass, please remember that you are still in the House of God, so please ensure that proper decorum and respect is maintained. Do not treat the Church as a studio. Keep in mind that there may be another Mass or a service to follow after your nuptial Mass and so we need to prepare for that celebration.

These directives are for your benefit and are meant to preserve the sanctity and joy of the celebration of the Sacrament of Marriage.

POINTS TO BE KEPT IN MIND (BY PRIESTS) FOR THE INTER-FAITH MARRIAGES (MARRIAGES OF DISPARITY OF CULT)

Such a marriage is non-sacramental, but is nonetheless a valid marriage. The proper procedures should be followed with regard to paper work and permissions. The couple should be clearly told that they cannot have a double ceremony and the reason for the same should be carefully explained.

The Rite of Marriage as found in the Ritual for a Marriage between a Catholic and a non-baptized person must be used (Chapter 3).

Kindly note that there is no mention of the celebration of Mass for this rite either before or, after the nuptials. Instead, we have a complete service, with the Greetings, Liturgy of the Word, Nuptial Rite, Intercessions, Nuptial Blessing and Concluding Rite. The Priest is to be vested and stole (and cope) for the celebration (not a chasuble)

Since the family of the Catholic partner often wants a Mass celebrated in conjunction with a marriage of this type, the following points should be noted:

  • We should first explain to the parties why the Church does not include the celebration of the Mass for this Rite. If they still insist on the Eucharistic celebration, one could consider having it after the entire Rite and distinct from it.

  • The Rite as described in the Ritual for these marriages should be followed as spelt out there. (Note that the Pocket Ritual {Rituale Parvum} should not be used as norm).

  • The Eucharist, if it is to follow, should use the texts of the Mass of the day or of Thanksgiving or Various needs, but not the texts of the Nuptial Mass. This fact should also be kept in mind by the choir for the choice of hymns. This Mass should not have the prayer of the Faithful or Nuptial Blessing (as these are already included in the nuptial Rite). The different roles (lector, etc.) may only be done by Catholics. The non-Catholic party should be clearly instructed about the nature of the celebration. No other items, edible or inedible should be distributed to the congregation before, during or after the distribution of Holy Communion. The Rituals of two Catholics should not be solemnized at this Mass.

  • The present practice of having only the vows and blessing / exchange of rings before Mass and including the other items of the Nuptial Rite during the Mass should be discontinued.

In July 2006, our Parish issued parish family cards (PFCs) to every registered family of our parish. We are sure that, by this time almost every eligible catholic family of our parish has obtained the parish family card. You have experienced the advantages of having the family card. First and foremost, it has given you an identity in our Parish. This ID is being used by you to approach the parish office for various pastoral needs, and to take part in various sports and community related events. However, there may be some questions in your mind regarding the family card, for which you want to have an answer. We have tried to answer some of the frequently asked questions (FAQs). Hope this helps to keep your family card updated. As the questions are answered, you may be asked to submit your parish family card (PFC) and/or the light green envelope to the parish office to make changes in them. Please remember to collect them from the office after a week. The four frequently used forms, namely: change of address form; addition/deletion form; form for lost or misplaced PFC and envelope; and moving out of parish form are printed at the end of the questions and answers for your information. These forms are available in our parish office for your ready use.

Question 1: I am going to shift to another zone/community within our parish. What am I required to do with my parish family card (PFC)?
Answer: Submit your PFC and the light green envelope provided by the parish for your one percent contribution, together with the “Change of Address Form” duly filled in, to the parish office. Collect your card and envelope with the changed address, after a week, from the parish office.

Question 2: A child is born in the family and is baptized. How will the name of the child be added in our PFC?
Answer: Submit your PFC together with the “Addition/deletion form” duly filled in, mentioning the details of the child, to the parish office.

Question 3: One of my sons, whose name is in our family card, just got married. How can I add the name of his wife in our PFC?
Answer: Submit your PFC and a copy of the Church marriage certificate of the newly married couple, together with the “addition/deletion form” duly filled in, mentioning her details, to the parish office. If the marriage is not blessed in a Catholic Church, her name will not be added in your PFC.

Question 4: My daughter just got married and is no more staying with me. Should her name be deleted from our PFC? If yes, how should I go about?
Answer: Even though she is your daughter, once married she becomes the family member of the boy’s house or a new house of the newly wedded couple. So, she is no more your family member with regard to your PFC. Approach the parish office with your PFC and have her name deleted from the card.

Question 5: My son has bought a flat/chawl for himself as he is just married or wants to get married in the near future. What is required to be done with regard to the PFC?
Answer: Since your son has bought a place of his own, he no longer belongs to your PFC. So, have his name deleted from your PFC by visiting the parish office. If he has made a house within our parish boundary, he needs to visit the parish office and mention that he was earlier part of your PFC, and fill in a new census form (available in the parish office) for himself. He can collect his new PFC after a week from the parish office. If he is buying a place in another parish, he can take a letter of introduction to the new parish by approaching the priest on duty in the office.

Question 6: Even though we are staying within the Sacred Heart Parish boundary, our family is not registered in the parish so far and we have not received a PFC. Will I get a PFC now? If yes, how?
Answer: For some reason, you did not fill the Parish Census Form a few years ago, and/or were not present when the priest came to bless your house and verify your family details around January to June, 2006. Approach the parish office with your Church marriage certificate and the baptism certificates of your children. It is advisable to have your Zone’s/Community’s PPC member or SCC animator to facilitate the process and to identify you as our parishioner. The parish office person will direct you to meet the concerned priest and sort out the matter.

Question 7: I am a Catholic and married to a Catholic or a non-Catholic in court (civil marriage) and not in the Catholic Church. Will our family be registered in the parish and will we get a PFC?
Answer: No. We register couples who are married in the Catholic Church and issue them PFCs. So, if you are not married at all and just living together or have married only in the court, we will not register you in our parish. If you are a Catholic and married to a non-Catholic in the Catholic Church, your family will be registered in our parish, and you will be issued a PFC. Couples not married in the Catholic Church may approach a priest in the parish and get their marriage rectified and then approach the parish office for registration.

Question 8: We are newcomers to Sacred Heart Parish and we have bought a house in the area for the first time. We would like our house to be blessed and our family registered in Sacred Heart Parish. How should we go about?
Answer: Bring along your Catholic Church marriage certificate, and a letter of introduction from your previous parish to Sacred Heart Church, and meet the person in the parish office. He will direct you to the priest concerned to fill the census form (available in the parish office) and to obtain a PFC. After filling the census form, the person in the parish office will direct you to the priest to get your house blessed. Collect your PFC after a week from the parish office.

Question 9: One of our family members expired. Should her/his name be deleted from our PFC?
Answer: Yes, her/his name needs to be deleted. Approach the parish office with your PFC and get the name deleted from the card.

Question 10: We would like the head of the family changed due to some valid reason, like the death of the head of the family. What should we do?
Answer: If the head of the household has expired, a responsible person of the family will determine who should be the new head of the household. Visit the parish office and submit the PFC, the light green envelope, and the “addition/deletion form” duly filled in, mentioning the old and the new head of the household. For any other reason, the person from the office may direct you to meet the concerned priest to look into the matter.

Question 11: We have bought a second house in the parish. We would like to have that house also registered in the parish? Can we do that?
Answer: No. We will register your family only in one place of residence/address.

Question 12: My husband or wife or son or daughter etc. is working abroad in a Gulf country and is temporarily staying there. Can their names be retained in our PFC?
Answer: Yes. As long as they went for work to a Gulf country, being your parish family card members earlier, and are temporarily staying there because of their work, they will continue to be your family card members, unless they make a separate house of their own in India. However, if any one or more of your family members have migrated to another country or have taken up permanent residence in a foreign country, for eg. in USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand etc., they no longer belong to your PFC. In such a case, approach the parish office with your PFC and get their names deleted from your PFC.

Question 13: We have misplaced or lost our family card and/or the light green envelope. Can we get a duplicate one?
Answer:Yes. You can get a duplicate PFC and/or the light green envelope. Visit the parish office and fill in the appropriate form (available in the parish office).

Question 14: My family is moving out of this parish to another parish. What must I do with our PFC?
Answer: Return your PFC to the parish office and mention that you are moving out of our parish. This will also facilitate the priest in the office to give you the letter of introduction to the Parish Priest of the parish you are moving to, if necessary.

Question 15: What is the use of the light green envelope, which has our family number, name of the head of the household and our address on it?
Answer:  That is given to you to make your one percent contribution to the Church, either in cash or by cheque, together with the white slip duly filled in. You will receive a receipt for your contribution in the same envelope, through your PPC member/SCC animator. If there is a change in the head of the household, or a change in your address, please make sure that you take this envelope too to the parish, while incorporating the changes in your PFC.

Question 16: Is it necessary to fill in the white slip and enclose it while making the one percent contribution to the parish?
Answer: Yes. That is required to identify the PFC number and other details by the accountant while entering your contribution in the computer and to make a receipt. The period for which the contribution is made needs to be clearly mentioned in the column "contribution for the months". For eg: May 2017 to July 2017. Do not forget to mention the telephone number where you can be reached during day time. This helps us to contact you, in case we need to clarify something regarding the contribution you have made.

Question 17: What is the accounting year for the one percent contribution to the Church?
Answer: The accounting year is: April to March. For eg., the current accounting year is: April 2017 to March 2018. You can make the contribution for the whole accounting year at one go, or in installments for one month, two months, a quarter etc.

Question 18: Is there a problem if I give the contribution according to the calendar year, i.e., from January to December?
Answer: Yes. There is a problem. For instance, if you give your contribution for the period: January 2017 to December 2017, these months fall in two accounting years: : April 2016 to March 2017 and April 2017 to March 2018. We cannot account for it and issue a receipt. The Church does not want to accumulate money belonging to the next accounting year, in this accounting year, as it attracts Income Tax.

Thank you for your co-operation in keeping your PFC updated.