‘The law of the Church gives the parish priest an ultimate responsibility for all aspects of parish life (including finance and administration, as well as liturgy, catechesis, pastoral care, etc) for which he is answerable to the Bishop and the Diocesan Trustees.

The priest does not lead and serve in isolation, however, but rather in collaboration and partnership with the whole parish community.

‘The Church is a family, and as in any family, everyone should be as involved as possible in family life, each according to their particular place in the family. In Catholic teaching, bishops and priests – assisted by deacons – have a distinctive and irreplaceable role as making visible the Risen Christ as our shepherd and teacher. But the whole baptised community is the royal and priestly people of God, and our common dignity and equality is the setting for the role of ordained ministers.

It is therefore essential that lay people be given every opportunity to play their full part in the life, liturgy and mission of the church in the diocese, deanery, cluster, parish and smaller communities, always in accordance with Catholic doctrine and Canon Law.’ (p. 36)