Sunday, October 19, 2008
Prayers for Parishes
Our archdiocese is in the final stage of implementing its "Pastoral Plan". In short, it is in the final stages of closing churches and merging parishes. In some ways the process was made easier for those in charge by Hurricane Katrina. It flooded many churches and emptied neighborhoods. Rather than making a decision about which parishes to close, in most cases they made decisions about which parishes to re-open. Often it was the parish in the neighborhood that had been less damaged, or the one with the pushiest pastor or the one where parishoners got it open before decisions were made from above. However, the areas of the city that didn't flood were generally in the same area "the sliver by the river" and that area had an oversupply of parishes compared to population. This weekend was the last weekend for three parishes, two of which have been very vocally resisting closure. It was also the last weekend for the parish next to mine; as of next weekend they are part of us. They weren't damaged in Katrina, but their school closed about ten years ago, and even before that happened many of the people in that neighborhood used our parish school. I don't know how big their CCD program was, but they merged with ours this year, and I have only a few more kids than I normally taught before I quit five years ago--and at that time we had two teachers/grade and now we have one. I guess what I'm saying is that I don't know how many people will be joining us. I'm sure those that are will be hurt that their parish closed, but from what I understand, it wasn't financially viable, and it was only a mile from ours. Please pray for them and all those affected by parish closings.