Diocesan Pastoral Plan for The TriParishes

Parishioners and priests assembled at the parish hall in Maringouin to hear the presentation last Saturday by the Diocesan Pastoral Planning Resource Team, the group selected by the bishop’s task force chaired by Fr. Trey Nelson.

The goal of the committee is stated as being the following: to develop a parish leadership structure, priestly ministry structure, and schedule of Masses that would be served by one priest only.

To that end, these are the recommendations that are being made to Bishop Muench for implementation by July 1, 2017:

A Revised Mass Schedule

Saturday

  • 4:oopm at Immaculate Heart of Mary

Sunday

  • 7:00am St. Joseph
  • 9:00am Immaculate Heart of Mary
  • 11:00am St. Frances Xavier Cabrini

All Holy Day Masses will take place at Immaculate Heart of Mary in Maringouin, since it is in the center of the cluster.

There will be no scheduled Mass at St. Catherine of Sienna in Fordoche

Daily Masses will be at 8:30am at Immaculate Heart of Mary.

It’s important to note that St. Catherine Mission is not being closed, even though there will be no regularly scheduled liturgies there. Devotional activities, such as a weekly rosary are to be continued and encouraged. The mission will also continue to be available for baptisms, weddings, and funerals as requested and Mass will be celebrated on or near The Feast of St. Catherine of Siena on April 29.

Parish Administration and Pastoral Care

The administrative offices for the TriParishes will be located in Maringouin. Monthly staff meetings will be held. Each parish remains an autonomous fiscal entity and parish offertory collections will not be “comingled”, but each parish (in consultation with the pastor and pastoral advisory and finance councils) may discern how to share resources as is necessary and desirable.

There will be a single Parish Pastoral Advisory Council to attend to the spiritual care of all three parishes. The Pastoral Council is not a governance board and is advisory only. Its scope is to develop (with the pastor) an ongoing vision for the parishes and to advise the pastor on how best to implement it.

Separate committees may be formed to handle local and/or temporal issues like maintenance, parish fairs, bereavement, etc.

Religious Education & Devotional Life

Maringouin will become the administrative center for religious education, with adult education courses and other devotional activities like weekly Eucharistic Adoration, as well as events not requiring individual classrooms (like retreats) taking place on the Immaculate Heart of Mary Campus.

While the curriculum for the parish schools of religion are being consolidated administratively, the present use of all three campuses and their classrooms for instruction will continue.

Additional Recommendations

The Pastoral Planning Resource Team recommend that a 3-parish retreat be held, facilitated by an outside group or team, to help the parishes build common bonds and become “more ecclesial and less parochial.”

Further, and certainly not least of all, the task force (and the pastor) wish to continue to utilize the gifts of Fr. Amrit Raj, IMS as parochial vicar for as long as he is available to us by the diocese and his religious order.