Fr. Todd 1/15/2023
Updated: Jan 18
This past weekend Bishop Boyea released an update on the ongoing Made for Mission initiative that I want to include here:
FROM BISHOP BOYEA REGARDING THE 10 NEW DEANS IN OUR DIOCESE:
Initially, it was thought [the vision for Realignment of Resources for Mission] could best be facilitated through our priests operating a shared pastorate over a group of parishes. This is what Canon 543 of the Code of Canon Law refers to as in solidum. However, we soon received word that Rome will not allow priests in solidum to be pastors of individual parishes.
What is more, our priests didn’t like the in solidum concept either, preferring instead to maintain the traditional link between a pastor and his people, between the shepherd and his flock. This was all good feedback and has been duly incorporated into the implementation of the Realign Resources for Mission vision, a process we've entitled Made for Mission.
Hence the more recent move to 22 parish groups, organized within 10 Deanery territories, with each led by a priest who is nominated as a Dean. Canon 555 of the Code of Canon Law lays out nicely the responsibilities for a Dean. These include:
· To promote and coordinate common pastoral activity
· To ensure that local clerics lead a life in keeping with their state
· To ensure that local clerics perform their duties diligently
· To ensure that religious functions are celebrated according to liturgical prescripts
· To ensure that the beauty and elegance of churches and sacred furnishings are maintained carefully, especially in the Eucharistic celebration and custody of the Eucharist
· To ensure that, according to particular law, clerics attend lectures, theological meetings, or conferences
· To take care that spiritual supports are available to presbyters of his district, and to show concern for those who are in difficult circumstances or beset by problems.
Bishop Boyea has asked me to be the Dean for our Deanery. Our Deanery is the same as our prior Vicariate, so it will include these parishes of Hillsdale and Lenawee Counties: Sacred Heart, St. Anthony, St. Mary on the Lake, Holy Family, St. Elizabeth, and Light of Christ. I look forward to continuing to work with Fr. David Reamsynder, Fr. Ginu, Fr. Jeff Poll, Fr. Dan Wheeler, and Fr. Mike Newman. We all have the same Mission, to have Parishes that are places where we can encounter Christ and help bring others to Him.
How I love our two parishes and this part of the Diocese! As a seminarian I was blessed to spend a summer at St. Anthony’s in Hillsdale, during which I came once to Sacred Heart’s Hall for a lunch. Little did I know that I would come as pastor six years later. Again, it is really a blessing to work with my brother priests in our region, and I know this will be a way to live our mission in a more intentional way.