As we work together as 4 parishes in the south of Rhondda Cynon Taf, we need a name to work under. In a couple of years we will review whether the parishes should be merged into a single parish – but since that can’t happen yet, now is not the time to discuss the difference between being a parish and being a pastoral partnership. But it does mean that the name we choose now might become the name of a future parish.

What makes a good name?

In this internet age, a good name is distinctive. It would be best if there is no other Christian organisation under the same name in South Wales, to avoid any possibility of confusion. Several people have already suggested one particular name to me – but I want to consult openly first to see if there are other strong candidates.

Another desirable feature is that the name should be associated with a date in the calendar which allows us to have a festival at a convenient time. We could call ourselves the “Parish of the Nativity” – but our feast day would be 25 December and we are likely to be focussing on other things at that time of year!

Finally, a good name has either a local connection or is expressive of who we are as a community.

Canon Law allows a wide range of possibilities for names:

A title or attribute of God, or a name of Jesus: for example, Holy Trinity, Precious Blood, Good Shepherd, Holy Spirit

An event in the life of Jesus or Mary: such as, Annunciation, Visitation, Presentation

A title of Mary: Our Lady of [many shrine names]; Rosa Mystica; Immaculate Heart

A group of saints: Holy Apostles, Guardian Angels, Welsh Martyrs

The name of a saint or blessed:

 – maybe with a local connection, or one of Wales’s beatified martyrs?

 – maybe recently beatified or canonized?

 – maybe honouring one of our underrepresented Celtic women saints?

Please take some time to pray about this, and if you wish to propose a name, please put your thoughts in writing – why is this name appropriate? Is it distinctive? Is there a local connection? On what date might we choose to celebrate? Send your thoughts to me by emailing gareth.leyshon@rcadc.org , or if on paper handing me your letter after Mass or by post to St Dyfrig’s Presbytery, Broadway, Treforest, PONTYPRIDD. CF37 1DB

The closing date for submissions is noon on Shrove Tuesday, 21 February 2023.