The Futures Project
“Here’s what you said. Here’s what we did. Is it satisfactory?” Archbishop Daniel E. Pilarczyk asked about 250 members of the presbyterate who gathered for Convocation of Priests at Incarnation Parish this fall.
At issue were subcommittee reports from the Future Implementation Team, explaining their interpretation and plan of action for each of 11 recommendations approved by the priests last year — all of which are designed to help the archdiocese and the archbishop plan for a future with fewer priests.
As each implementation plan was outlined, presented in sequence on color-coded and numbered pages in a binder of materials, corresponding to the 11 recommendations approved by priests at previous convocations, an overwhelming majority of priests raised their hands in support of the work of committees and teams.
And when all were supported, the archbishop said, “We have taken a look — or tried to look — into our future and we have made a considered and earnest response as we are able to see it now. Through what we have done and what we are going to do, the Lord is in the Church of Cincinnati.”
In his remarks, Archbishop Pilarczyk summarized not only the work of the day but also the work of the last five years of planning for a church that is expected to have fewer clergy. He expressed confidence that the work of the priests and archdiocesan groups resulted in a proactive plan to help the church — when and if it becomes necessary — to cope with the challenges it may face.
“We have agreed on more focused ministerial task,” said the archbishop, praising inter-parochial cooperation. “We have agreed on vocations promotion, primarily for priests but also for other church vocations,” many of which are needed in the church to fulfill the ministries.
“We have (developed) a better evaluation of lay ministers, job descriptions, and have an evaluation of priest pastors, a process that “has never been done in any articulate formal way, and I suspect few if any local churches have every done it,” he said.
“And we have agreed on a focused attention to pastoral associates, clearer curricula for ongoing education of priests and a better distribution of deacons,” said the archbishop. “Thanks be to God and to all of you.”
The morning hours of the convocation were devoted to helping priests implement No. 5 and No. 6 recommendations, dealing with job descriptions and review processes, with the help of Peter Bycio, Williams College of Business professor at Xavier University; Robert J. Reid, an attorney with Dismore & Shohl in Cincinnati; and Vince Frasher, archdiocesan personnel director.
The afternoon efficiently moved through the remaining FIT reports on recommendations, followed by the affirmation of priests.
“My sincere thanks to all of you,” said the archbishop. “This is almost the end of a long planning and reflective process. We have done well.”
Pastoral Regions OK’d For Possible Future Use
Following a recommendation developed by the Futures Committee and a report from the Futures Implementation Team, Archbishop Daniel E. Pilarczyk approved pastoral regions for the archdiocese. Copies of the pastoral regions were distributed to priests attending the fall Convocation of Priests at Incarnation Parish in Centerville.
The creation of pastoral regions refers to one of 11 recommendations developed by the committee, established by the archbishop in 2000, in light of studies that project an increase in the number of laity serving in the church and a decline in the number of priests. The pastoral regions are seen as a long-term tool for maintaining ministries through cooperation and collaboration of the parishes within each region of each deanery, when only 100 pastors may serve the archdiocese.
The pastoral regions are:
Cathedral and St. Louis
Holy Cross/Immaculata and Old St. Mary’s
Annunciation and chaplaincies
St. Boniface and chaplaincies
Mother of Christ, St. Joseph, St. Leo
St. Andrew Deanery:
St. John in West Chester
St. Maximilian Kolbe
St. Philip, St. Francis de Sales, Lebanon
St. Margaret of York
St. Andrew in Milford, St. Elizabeth Seton in Mount Repose
St. Vincent Ferrer, All Saints
St. Savior and St. John in Deep Park
Sts. Peter and Paul, Our Lady of the Sacred Heart, both in Reading
St. Gabriel, St. Michael in Sharonville.
St. Francis de Sales Deanery:
Immaculate Heart of Mary
Guardian Angels, St. Jerome
St. Veronica, St. John Fisher
Our Lord Christ the King, St. Stephen
St. Mary in Hyde Park
St. Rose, St. Francis de Sales in Walnut Hills
St. Anthony in Madisonville, St. Cecilia, St. John Vianney, St. Margaret of Cortona
Holy Trinity on Norwood, Nativity, Our Lady of Sorrows
St. Agnes, St. Martin de Porres, St. Mark, St. Andrew
St. Lawrence Deanery:
St. John in Harrison, St. Bernard in Taylor’s Creek
Our Lady of Visitation
St. Joseph in North Bend, St. Aloysius in Sayler Park
St. Jude, St. Aloysius in Bridgetown
Our Lady of Victory, St. Simon
St. Dominic, St. Vincent de Paul
St. Martin of Tours, St. Catharine
Our Lady of Lourdes
St. William, St. Teresa of Avila
St. Lawrence, Resurrection, Holy Family
St. Margaret Mary Deanery:
St. James the Greater in White Oak
Assumption in Mount Healthy and St. Margaret Mary
St. Clare, St. Therese the Little Flower
Corpus Christi, St. John Neumann
St. John in Dry Ridge
St. Bartholomew, St. Vivian
Our Lady of the Rosary in Greenhills, St. James in Wyoming, St. Matthias
Holy Family, St. Mary, St. Agnes, St. Benedict the Moor
Our Lady of Mercy, Queen of Martyrs, Corpus Christi
St. Christopher in Vandalia, St. John in Tipp City
St. Paul in Englewood, St. Rita, Precious Blood
Ascension in Kettering
Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception, St. Helen
Holy Trinity, St. Joseph, Emmanuel
Holy Angels, St. Anthony
St. Francis of Assisi in Centerville, St. Charles in Kettering
Our Lady of Good Hope in Miamisburg, St. Henry
St. Luke in Beavercreek, Queen of Apostles
St. Peter in Huber Heights, Our Lady of the Rosary, St. Adalbert, Holy Cross, St. Stephen
St. Albert the Great in Kettering
Incarnation in Centerville
Sacred Heart in Fairfield, St. Ann
St. Julie Billiart, St. Peter in Chains St. Joseph
Queen of Peace, St. Aloysius in Shandon
St. Mary/campus ministry
Holy Family, Our Lady of Sorrows in Monroe, Holy Name in Trenton, St. Augustine in Germantown
St. Mary in Franklin, St. Augustine in Waynesville
Visitation in Eaton, St. John in New Parish, St. Mary in Camden
St. Martin Deanery:
St. Columbkille, territory of former Holy Name in Blanchester
St. Mary in Hillsboro, St. Benignus in Greenfield
Holy Trinity in West Union, St. Mary Queen of Heaven in Peebles
St. Michael in Ripley, St. George in Georgetown, St. Mary in Arnheim
St. Michael in Mount Orab, St. Angela Merici (less former Holy Name in Blanchester territory), (St. Elizabeth in Sardinia to be closed and its territory and assets divided between St. Mary and St. Michael)
St. Mary in Bethel, St. Peter in New Richmond, St. Bernadette in Amelia
St. Thomas More in Withamsville, Holy Trinity in Batavia
St. Philomena in Stonelick, St. Ann in Williamsburg, St. Louis in Owensville.
St. Marys Deanery:
Holy Trinity in Coldwater, St. Mary in Philothea, St. Anthony in St. Anthony
Immaculate Conception in Celina, Our Lady of Guadalupe in Montezuma, St. Teresa in Rockford
St. Henry in St. Henry, St. Bernard in Burkettsville, St. Francis in Cranberry Prairie, St. Aloysius in Carthagena, St. Wendelin in St. Wendelin.
Mary Help of Christians in Fort Recovery, St. Paul in Sharpsburg, St. Peter in St. Peter, St. Joseph in St. Joseph
St. Joseph in Wapakoneta, St. John in Fryburg
Holy Redeemer in New Bremen
Holy Rosary in St. Marys, St. Patrick in Glynwood
St. John in Maria Stein, Precious Blood in Chickasaw, Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Cassella, St. Rose in St. Rose, St. Sebastian in St. Sebastian
St. Augustine in Minster, St. Joseph in Egypt.
St. Michael in Fort Loramie, Sts. Peter and Paul in Newport
Sacred Heart in McCartyville, Immaculate Conception in Botkins, St. Lawrence in Rhine
St. Mary and St. Boniface, both in Piqua, St. Teresa in Covington
Immaculate Conception in Bradford, St. Denis in Versailles, Holy Family in Frenchtown, St. Mary in Greenville
St. Remy in Russia, St. Louis in North Star, St. Nicholas in Osgood
Holy Angels in Sidney
St. Patrick in Troy, Transfiguration in West Milton
St. Mary in Russells Point, St. Patrick in Bellefontaine
Immaculate Conception in North Lewisburg, Sacred Heart in St. Paris, St. Mary in Urbana, St. Michael in Mechanicsburg
Sacred Heart in New Carlisle, St. Bernard, St. Teresa
St. Charles in South Charlestown, St. Joseph, St. Raphael
Mary Help of Christians in Fairborn, St. Paul in Yellow Springs
St. Augustine in Jamestown, St. Brigid in Xenia