The Statutes of Our Lady of Presentation Communities and Ministries (see canon 304)

ARTICLE 1 - Purpose

1.1 Our Lady of Presentation Communities and Ministries (hereafter referred to as PM) is a network of small covenanted communities and of ministries of God's word. PM is called to share in evangelizing the world by helping Christians grow in discipleship (Mt 28:19), that is, by leading them to imitate Christ in His character and ministry.

1.2 PM's principles of discipleship are primarily based on Acts 2:42: "They devoted themselves to the apostles' instruction and the communal life, to the breaking of bread and the prayers." Our approach to discipleship is:

a. rooted in God's word

b. in the context of communal life (marriage, family, parenting, parish, and home-based communities)

c. celebrating the Sacraments (especially Baptism, the Eucharist, and the Sacrament of Reconciliation)

d. faithful in prayer (including Marian prayer)

e. led by the Holy Spirit

f. patterned on the RCIA (see Lay Members of Christ's Faithful People, 61)

g. living a simple life-style

h. in submission to the Pope and the Archbishop, as defined in Church teaching and canon law

i. with a strong emphasis on evangelization


ARTICLE 2 - Center

2.1 PM's center for communities and ministries is at 3230 McHenry Avenue, Cincinnati, Ohio 45211. Much of the work of PM is organized or done at this location.

2.2 PM's Discipleship Center is located in Adams County, Ohio. Many of PM's discipleship programs are conducted here.

2.3 These centers are legally owned by Presentation Ministries Inc., a tax-exempt corporation under Section 501, C-3, of the Internal Revenue Service Code and under the law of the state of Ohio, USA.


ARTICLE 3 - Governance

3.1 Home-based communities (HBC) and ministries of PM become part of the network of PM through their acceptance by the directors (see articles 3.18ff).

Leaders of HBCs and leaders of ministries of PM

3.2 Each HBC and ministry of PM has one or more leaders.

3.3 The leaders of HBCs are chosen by consensus of the HBC members, the HBC networkers, and the directors of PM (see articles 3.12ff).

3.4 The leaders of the ministries in PM's network are "co-workers" of PM and are chosen by the consensus of the ministry networkers and the directors (see articles 4.8ff).

3.5 The leaders of the HBCs and the ministries of PM make all decisions and set up their own decision-making processes for their HBCs or their ministries.

3.6 The decisions of leaders must be ratified by their networkers or the directors.

3.7 Leaders can appeal to the directors if their networkers do not ratify one of their decisions. Leaders can appeal to the head director if the other directors do not ratify one of their decisions.

3.8 Leaders celebrate PM's monthly communities' Mass.

3.9 Leaders prepare annual reports to their networkers.

3.10 HBC leaders in Greater Cincinnati must attend 16-20 hours of leadership training a year (unless excused by their networkers).

3.11 Ministry leaders must attend at least two leaders' meetings a year.


3.12 The networkers help HBCs and ministries of PM to inter-relate with other HBCs and ministries.

3.13 Any new networkers are chosen each year by the networkers of the previous year and by the directors.

3.14 The networkers ratify the decisions of the leaders and do not tell the leaders what to do in the leaders' own HBC or ministry.

3.15 The networkers can make decisions that, in the judgment of the directors, would affect more than one HBC or ministry of PM.

3.16 The networkers can make their own decisions or ratify a decision made by a leader only if the decision or ratification is approved by over 80% of the networkers.

3.17 The decisions of the networkers must be ratified by the directors. The networkers can appeal to the head director if the directors do not ratify one of their decisions.


3.18 Directors must

a. be "co-workers" of PM

b. have at least a year of experience in leading a HBC or one of the ministries of PM

c. be chosen by the present directors

d. be accepted by at least 80% of all members of PM attending the annual communities' retreat or winter "co-workers' " retreat

3.19 The directors are usually trustees of Presentation Inc. and are responsible to fulfill the obligations of PM required by civil law (see article 2.3).

3.20 A head director is chosen by the directors annually.

3.21 The directors make decisions that in their judgment would affect more than one HBC or ministry.

3.22 The directors make decisions about matters in PM which are not mentioned in these statutes.

3.23 The directors ratify the decisions of the networkers and leaders and do not tell them what to do in the networkers' and the leaders' own ministries.

3.24 The directors must have a consensus to make decisions or ratify the decisions of networkers or of leaders.

3.25 The head director can veto the directors' decisions or ratifications.


ARTICLE 4 - Conditions of Membership

4.1 Only Roman Catholic Christians can become members of PM.

4.2 The two ways of becoming members of PM are:

a. by being members of a HBC networked with PM

b. by being "co-workers"

4.3 All covenants and commitments within PM are reviewed annually by the directors (see 4.5). With the directors' approval, these covenants and commitments are renewed for one year beginning November 21, the feast day of Our Lady of Presentation. This renewal is done in the context of the eucharistic liturgy.

4.4 A member of PM can become a life-long member of PM by meeting the following criteria:

a. Life-long members must be receiving regular spiritual direction.

b. Life-long members will make a one-year commitment followed by three two-year commitments. The process takes seven years. The first commitment is life-long, but it is not final until the last commitment.

c. Anyone interested in being life-long member of PM should submit a letter indicating this to the directors by September 8th. This letter should be accompanied by a letter of approval from his spiritual director. If the directors approve the request, the applicant will make the commitment on November 21. This process also applies to those who are renewing their commitments for two years.

Members of Home-Based Communities

4.5 All members of HBCs in PM network apply their baptismal covenant by covenanting annually to the other members of their communities. This means that the members make some basic agreements which will help them grow in living daily baptismal brotherhood and sisterhood in Christ, as mentioned in article 4.6a.

4.6 HBCs have the following responsibilities to the network:

a. Each HBC accepts PM's principles for living daily communal life in Christ. Daily life in Christ includes sharing:

1) God's word
2) time
3) the Eucharist
4) prayer
5) charisms
6) possessions
7) meals

b. Members of a HBC pray each day for all members of the HBCs in the network and for all the ministries of PM.

c. Members of a Cincinnati HBC celebrate PM's monthly communities' Mass (unless excused by their leaders).

d. Members of a Cincinnati HBC attend the annual retreat for all the HBCs (unless excused by their leaders).

e. Each HBC has an outreach ministry in which all its members participate.

f. Each HBC has an ongoing evangelization effort and is also committed to growth in its membership and to the development of new HBCs.

4.7 A Catholic becomes part of a HBC in PM's network through the acceptance into the HBC by its leader. The leaders decide to accept the person into the HBC based on articles 4.5—4.6.


4.8 A second way of becoming a member of PM is by being a "co-worker". The prerequisites for being a "co-worker" are to be:

a. submission to the lordship of Jesus

b. docile to the Holy Spirit

c. active in one's parish church

d. obedient to the teachings of the Church, as expressed by the Pope

4.9 the responsibilities of a "co-worker" are:

To help make disciples of all nations (Mt 28:19):

a. follow the Holy Spirit's leading in working for PM.

To be a faithful disciple:

b. celebrate Mass and Holy Communion daily or as often as possible with a view to building Christian community.

c. read and pray the Bible daily to share Jesus and His word with others.

d. go to Confession monthly.

To be in communion with other co-workers:

e. pray part of the rosary or of the Liturgy of the Hours daily for PM.

f. fast at least weekly in some way for PM and in order to live a more austere life-style. (We usually fast on Friday except during Christmas and Easter seasons.)

g. try to participate in the yearly retreats for "co-workers" and in other programs of PM. ("Co-workers" living within 100 miles of Cincinnati commit themselves to participate in at least one of the two "co-workers' " annual retreats. Exceptions can be made by the leaders of the co-workers for those who are elderly, sick, or have other special circumstances.)

4.10 The process by which "co-workers" enter into this commitment is determined by the directors.


ARTICLE 5 - Apostolates

5.1 PM makes disciples for Jesus primarily by feeding Christians (see Jn 21:17) with the spiritual food of God's word, especially the daily Mass readings (see Luke 24:27-30). Thereby, Christians will have the strength to evangelize their families, neighbors, parishes, fellow workers, and even to the ends of the earth (Acts 1:8; see also Catechism, 899).

5.2 To help Christians grow in discipleship, PM equips them to use their spiritual gifts for service (Eph 4:11, see also Lay Members of Christ's Faithful People, 30).

5.3 Because evangelization and discipleship are done through Christian community, PM is a national network of covenanted, home-based communities.


ARTICLE 6 - Financial Matters

6.1 PM pays no salaries.

6.2 PM pays all bills when they are due.

6.3 PM does not take out loans, receive interest, or have insurance.

6.4 All contracts for services to PM must be the lowest bid.

6.5 PM is supported by voluntary contributions. Our only approach to funding is prayer and making our needs known.

6.6 PM gives 15% of total contributions to charities. The directors determine those who will receive these contributions.

6.7 PM publishes an annual financial report.

6.8 A finance committee is responsible for monitoring PM's financial affairs.

6.9 Directors cannot be members of the finance committee.

6.10 The finance committee is accountable to the head director.


ARTICLE 7 - Statute Changes

7.1 A member of PM seeking to change these statutes should submit the proposed change in writing to one of the directors.

7.2 These statutes can be changed with the agreement of at least 80% of the members of the community attending the annual communities' retreat or winter "co-workers' " retreat. Any member of PM not attending one of the retreats may share in writing with PM's directors their discernment about any of the proposed statute changes by a date specified by the directors.


ARTICLE 8 - Ecclesial Relationships

8.1 PM is a private association of the members of the faithful in accordance with canon 322 of the Code of Canon Law and with the norms expressed in The Lay Members of Christ's Faithful People, 29-30.

8.2 PM is related to the Archdiocese of Cincinnati through its spiritual advisors appointed by the Archbishop.

8.3 Spiritual advisors must

a. participate yearly in at least five communities' Masses and/or leaders' meetings.

b. be open to give spiritual direction and leadership to individuals in PM, HBCs of PM, and ministries of PM.

8.4 The directors can nominate possible spiritual advisors to be appointed by the Archbishop.

8.5 All members of PM are primarily under the authority and direction of the pastors of their parishes. Any spiritual advice from the members of PM is only supplementary to that given by their pastors.


ARTICLE 9 - Dissolution

9.1 If PM would be dissolved, the directors are responsible to ensure that any temporal goods held in common be used to support another Roman Catholic association with similar aims.


(Additions/revision/corrections 2/99)