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Boston archdiocese unveils new reconfiguration plan

Catholic World News - January 10, 2013

The Boston archdiocese has announced the first step in a new plan to reorganization parishes, creating new “collaboratives” that will combine 28 parish churches into 12 new administrative units. The 12 clusters announced on January 10 are the first in a series of moves, which will eventually reduce the 288 parishes of the Boston archdiocese to 135 such units.

The “collaboratives” will pool resources, including clergy, in a bid to save expenses and provide more efficient use of the shrinking number of priests in the archdiocese. The reorganization plan is the 2nd such move by the Boston archdiocese under the direction of Cardinal Sean O’Malley; in 2004 the cardinal announced that 65 parishes would be closed.

The Boston archdiocese has been battered by plunging Mass attendance, a steady fall in the number of priests available for ministry, and budget shortfalls—all aggravated by the fallout from the sex-abuse scandal.

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  • Posted by: koinonia - Jan. 13, 2013 7:49 AM ET USA

    Vibrant faith, enthusiastic participation in the sacraments and clergy animated with God's grace and dedicated to the work of salvation, cognizant of what is meant by the Communion of Saints, is helpful in averting decline. Christ is essential- indeed central- to this mission of true love. Thus the problem of clerical abuse exhibits acutely the gravity and severe, tragic consequences of disordered and selfish departure from this central mission of sanctifying love.

  • Posted by: unum - Jan. 11, 2013 10:27 AM ET USA

    Clustering beats closing viable parishes. But, as always, adequate trained staffing is the difference between success and failure.

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