Important Message from Fr. Gerry
Parish Restructuring in the Archdiocese of Hartford 2021
The Archdiocese of Hartford is making plans to assure the Catholic faithful that it will provide the sacramental life of its people. The ideal is to have one parish per city/town.
At the present time our Dioceses has 150 priests and 132 parishes. In ten years we will have less than 100 priests. It should be noted that not all priests are pastors, some are assistant pastors. It is not possible to plan for priests that pass away or are not able to continue to serve due to illness. Therefore, the 132 parishes will not be sustainable over the next 10 years. With these facts in mind, the Archdiocese plans on reducing the number of parishes to 64.
So what is the plan for the Town of New Milford?
The Town of New Milford will have one Parish, St. Francis Xavier. St. Francis Xavier Parish will be composed of two churches, Our Lady of the Lakes and St. Francis. The Parish of St. Francis will have two Trustees, one from each church. There will be one Parish Council with members from both churches. There will be one Finance Committee with members from both churches. For the financial record keeping, all finances will be consolidated into one Parish account. The reason for one account is that all bills will be paid by the Parish. All employees of both churches will become employees of St. Francis Parish.
Each church will maintain its own separate ledger with income, expenses and assets recorded for each. Of ultimate importance is that each church needs to continue to support its own congregation for future growth, but it also enables both churches to work with each other for the good of the Catholic population in New Milford.
Some may view it that St. Francis is inheriting Our Lady of the Lakes, but it should also be seen that Our Lady of the Lakes is inheriting St. Francis. Together, our two churches will make New Milford’s Catholic community stronger.
Rev. Gerald H. Dziedzic
Pastor of Our Lady of the Lakes and St. Francis Xavier
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