The following article was submitted by Michelle Arjoon of the St Dominic’s Pastoral Centre. It has been edited for length and clarity.
Ten years ago, December 10, 2007, the Dominican Friars – spearheaded by Fr Lawson OP at the time, opened the doors of St Dominic’s Pastoral Centre to our community here in Trinidad.
Their vision was that the centre be “the spring [from]where people will find the truth in all areas of life”. Their mission was to bring in-depth knowledge of our Catholic faith and the Church’s teaching to our communities and, with the parish, provide social services through various apostolates for the improvement of our people and Trinidad and Tobago as a whole (extract from St Dominic’s Pastoral Centre Original Proposal).
Today Fr Carlyle Fortune OP has assembled a Pastoral Management Committee from members of his congregation to overseer/guide the deliverance of that vision, foster faith formation, strengthen families and support the disadvantaged.
The committee comprises Charles Percy (the chairman), Linda Besson, Eugene Tiah, Gina Welch and Fr Fortune. Their mandate is to ensure the continued growth, efficiency and sustainability of the pastoral programme’s offerings, and keeping Pastoral Centre Management in line with the Dominican friars’ vision and mission. A consultant has been recently engaged to assist in operationalising the strategic vision and managing day-to-day operations. Their ministries under the guidance of PIT (led by Linda Besson) have full use of the centre and the hope is that it will be filled to capacity with programmes that support faith formation, strengthen our families and support the disadvantaged.
The extensive repairs and refurbishment to the centre over the past few months have come to a close, so the St Dominic’s Pastoral Centre is now fully open to the pastoral and wider community for a relatively small contribution to cover operating expenses.
The centre’s two anchor tenants are the St Finbar’s Parish Office and the Dominican Book Centre and boasts
A 400-seater auditorium with balcony seats, an augmented stage with state-of-the-art audiovisual equipment, a kitchen and bar servery
The Dominican Centre of Learning with two lecture rooms
The Conference Centre with three meeting rooms with capacities ranging from 12 to 30 persons boardroom style and access to a kitchenette for serving light refreshments
St Martin de Porres Outreach Centre which carries three meeting rooms and a consultation room
All the rooms at the centre bear Dominican saint names: St Thomas Aquinas, St Louis Bertrand, St Rosa de Lima, and St Margaret of Hungary.
The centre can host retreats, workshops, seminars, AGMs, product launches, fundraisers, film screenings, luncheons, dinners, bingos, receptions for baptisms/ weddings/anniversaries/birthdays/funerals and family reunions.
Support for the centre to allow facilitation of programme offerings can come through donations, Deeds of Covenant, funeral collections and bequeaths.
Reservation forms for facility usage are available at St Finbar’s Parish Office/the St Martin de Porres Outreach Centre/the Dominican Bookstore or directly from the centre. You can view pictures of the facility offerings on their FB page.
For further information or to book onsite viewings contact 633-2310 ext 241/681-8549 or email firstname.lastname@example.org