Dorothy Johansen, National Secretary-Treasurer, August 30th, 2023
FOR: Secretaries and Treasurers at All Levels
My dear sisters in the League,
I am delighted to serve you as the secretary-treasurer, which now also includes the communications responsibilities. I have lived in Alberta my entire life, excepting three years in Newfoundland for attending university. I am married to Michael, and we have one daughter, Jamie. I am currently the secretary of St. Thomas More Parish Council (Edmonton). I volunteer at church as coordinator of the extraordinary ministers of holy communion, serve at mass as an adult server and sit on the parish liturgy committee.
As the national officer responsible for communications, I will be focused on continuing the good works in communications and on improving them as needed. I would like to highlight some of the changes in communications protocols that were recently adopted to address the request from members to be more structured in sending information.
As part of the five-year strategic plan, the effective communication working group was tasked to “improve, streamline, and expedite internal and external communications”. The working group provided valuable recommendations to the national executive that were discussed. The following were adopted.
Encourage more communications between council executives horizontally and vertically by making email addresses available to each other and by organizing and hosting in-person and virtual meetings and events. National level encourages all levels to do so.
The national executive recommends that permanent e-mail addresses be established at all council levels, with more than one person having the password to access the email through an optional free subscription service, such as Gmail, Outlook, Yahoo, AOL, Proton, Tutanota, or iCloud, so that the member who becomes the new president or secretary can take over the account, rather than receiving emails to a personal account.
Information from each level should be sent out on a designated day of the week or month. This will allow everyone to receive fewer, more meaningful communications, rather than being inundated with individual communications at the choice of the sender. The executive hopes this will eliminate any missed messages or the members feeling overwhelmed by receiving too many communications.
The national executive in consultation with national office staff has decided that national communications will be sent out in one email on Wednesdays to the president and secretary of the council to which the message is intended. If it is directed to the parish level, the diocesan and provincial presidents and secretaries will also receive a copy. If it is directed to the diocesan level, it will be copied to the provincial president and secretary. It is recommended that each level of the League determine what day of the week or month will be the designated day to send communication to their members or councils so that everyone knows when to expect information.
We are discontinuing the twice-yearly parish council mailings to reduce the duplication of information that needs to be distributed. We would like to encourage each council to enter the president’s and secretary’s email addresses into the membership system so that you can receive the information electronically. We also post the information on the national website. If there is no email address on file, we will save up the communiques and print and send them to a parish council via Canada Post at the end of each month.
As the national secretary-treasurer, I will be focused on providing oversight for the League and making recommendations for the budget, determining if there are any costs that can be reduced. The largest budget item we have is the Development Fund, and I would like to ensure you are aware this fund is available to be used by all councils.
The National Development Fund allows councils to:
- visit parishes without councils to present on the benefits of membership
- assist in the organization of parish councils
- assist parish, diocesan and provincial councils to promote League leadership training and other development workshops that are available in the League
- promote League development through spiritual development
I would ask each parish, diocesan or provincial executive to determine if it will be applying for funding from the National Development Fund (Form 512) to do any of the following in 2024 and to send an email to email@example.com with their intent by September 30, 2023 so that the budget can better reflect the intended development.
Your sister in the League,