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​​​​Canon law mandates a Parish Finance Council in each parish to serve as the consultative body to advise and assist the pastor/administrator or other person in charge in controlling and overseeing the financial affairs of the parish and any schools, centers, or other operations affiliated with the parish (Canon 537).

The pastor/administrator or other person in charge is responsible for all financial aspects of the parish operations, but is expected to consult with the Parish Finance Council in establishing and reviewing annual operating budgets for the parish, school, and other parish operations and in setting the annual capital expenditures budget. The Parish Finance Council receives monthly expense and income reports from the parish and school to review and provide its insight and advice.

The Parish Finance Council is accountable to the pastor/administrator or other person in charge, but if the advice of a Parish Finance Council is unanimous in any particular matter, that decision is expected to be given serious consideration. Members of the Parish Finance Council are appointed for terms by the pastor/administrator or other person in charge and may be active members of the parish or, as needed, may be recommended parishioners from surrounding communities. Parish Finance Council members represent the parish at large and no specific group within the parish community.

When leadership at a parish changes, members of the existing Parish Finance Council submit their resignations, which may or may not be accepted. A successor Parish Finance Council is to be organized promptly. When possible, members should be skilled in business with expertise in management, finance, accounting, law, development, or related fields. Members cannot have a conflict of interest and members of the parish or school staff or relatives of parish ministerial leaders may not be members. However, the parish business manager, bookkeeper, or other lay financial administrators and the ministerial leadership of the parish participate in the Parish Finance Council without a vote.

The archdiocese has established guidelines for Parish Fi​nance Councils​. The San Gabriel Pastoral Region developed an Implementation Guide for Parish Finance Councils, which is available as a useful reference for any parish in the archdiocese.