The USA/Canada council became an official national council within Serra International on June 1, 1994, when the officers and regional representatives who had been elected earlier that spring took office. At the June 1993 International Board meeting Phoenix, Ariz., permission was given to form the USA/Canada Council. Working committees met during the next year, developing an operating structure, a Constitution and Bylaws, and a transition plan. In June 2000, Canada became a separate council.
As Serra International is the lay vocation arm of the Church, our mission is to foster and affirm vocations to the ministerial priesthood and vowed religious life in the USA, and through this ministry further our members’ common Catholic faith.
- To affirm the priesthood and religious life as positive lifestyles
- To invite all men and women to follow their baptismal call
- to educate and inform our members, collaborators and the Catholic community of our commitment to promote priesthood and the religious life.
- To inspire and call forth a well-trained and dedicated corps of leaders at all levels of Serra by spiritual and practical formation
- To develop openness to the opinions of others.
The USA Council provides the structure to effectively respond to the twofold challenge placed before it: to be the “lay vocations arm of the Church” and to increase the number of clubs and members in the United States.
The United States is divided into 13 regions that correspond to the regions established by the National Conference of Catholic Bishops (NCCB) AND ADOPTED BY THE National Conference of Diocesan Vocation Directors (NCDVD) and the National Conference of Religious vocation Director (NRVC). Regions are served by an elected regional director whose responsibilities are:
- To work with clubs and district governors to develop closer contacts with bishops and vocation directors in the region.
- To coordinate vocations efforts with other groups that are active in vocations work like the Knights of Columbus, the National Council of Catholic Women (NCCW). Campus ministers and others.
Four major committees work to further the goals of the USA Council in the areas of vocations, membership, programs and communications. The goals of each committee are:
- To actively strengthen and expand the present clubs with new, enthusiastic members, especially women, and retain current members.
- To spread Serra through the formation of new clubs, especially in areas where bishops have requested Serra, and establish and improve Serra’s effectiveness in those areas not presently or lightly served.
- To review and improve the training of district governors and assist with the development and establishment of district extension teams.
- To update and improve various report forms to provide meaningful information to assist in continued improvement of Serra
- To develop a group of interested and active non-Serrans who will contribute to Serra’s vocational activities.
- To develop each clubs University of Christian Principles through new internal study and discussion programs on the Eucharist, vocational pastoral ministry, the new catechism, the church, and programs for reaching younger, lay Catholics, and a resource library of pragmatic materials.
- To encourage all Serra clubs to have active and involved newsletter committees that effectively communicate club activities, provide news to members, increase club morale and support club goals.
- To promote club activities and news within the local community through press releases in local papers, regular contact with secular and religious press, and access to local and cable television.