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Formation of vicariates will put support closer to parishes and the people they serve

Implementation of the vicariate structure will take effect in July.


 

More All Things New information

The All Things New website has more information on vicariates, parishes and configurations and more information. Visit https://allthingsnew.archstl.org/

More coverage from the St. Louis Review


 

Scroll to the bottom of this story to see the list of parish changes by vicariate, along with the maps of the individual deaneries that make up the vicariates.


Map of all three vicariates, with each vicariate made up of two deaneries.
Three vicariates have been established in the Archdiocese of St. Louis as part of the All Things New pastoral planning initiative.

A vicariate is a grouping of parishes within the archdiocese defined by geographic region to provide parish support and administration. It is a common Church structure implemented in other dioceses around the world.

The vicariates — Northern Vicariate, Southern Vicariate and Western Vicariate — will be overseen by a priest appointed as episcopal vicar, a full-time role, to foster fraternity among the priests, develop regional cooperation and coordinate with archdiocesan ministries. The episcopal vicars and vicariates are:

• Northern Vicariate: Father Scott Jones, currently pastor of Sts. Teresa and Bridget in north St. Louis;

• Southern Vicariate: Father Michael Lydon, currently pastor of Sacred Heart in Troy;

• Western Vicariate: Father John Brockland, currently pastor of Sts. Joachim and Ann in St. Charles.

According to data from the Office of Pastoral Planning, the Northern Vicariate encompasses 152,443 Catholics in 366 square miles; the Southern Vicariate encompasses 76,633 Catholics in 2,821 square miles; and the Western Vicariate encompasses 179,835 Catholics in 2,865 square miles.

Father Carl Scheble, currently pastor of St. Gertrude in Krakow and St. Ann in Clover Bottom, has been named vicar general and moderator of the curia. He will work closely with the episcopal vicars.

Each vicariate will have a team to provide local pastoral and administrative support. The team will include a vicariate coordinator and could include coordinators of Hispanic ministry, evangelization, faith formation, youth ministry, social outreach and more, depending on the needs of each vicariate. They also will include liaisons for human resources, Catholic education and finance.

In listening to priests throughout the All Things New process, Archbishop Mitchell T. Rozanski said one of the strongest messages he received from many “is their desire for putting pastoral services closer to the people and parishes they serve,” he said.

Archbishop Rozanski has previous experience with the vicariate model in his home Archdiocese of Baltimore. While he was an auxiliary bishop in that archdiocese, overseeing a vicariate, “We asked the priests if they felt we should abandon the vicariate system, and the priests said no,” Archbishop Rozanski said.

Fr. Jones
Father Jones said the vicariate model is an example of the synodality priority of the Church. Vicariates “will help increase dialogue and people having opportunities to discern together what works best,” he said. “And so I'm excited — I think this is a model that does bring discernment down to more of a local level.”

In his experience as pastor of Sts. Teresa and Bridget and dean of the North City Deanery, he’s seen parishes unite over common concern for the communities they serve. “That's one of the goals of the vicariate model: to see how parishes can work together,” he said. “Even from different regions, how can they bring their gifts to each other?”

As Father Brockland prepares to become episcopal vicar, “I imagine my mantra with pastors being at the outset — for the first several months if not a year — as just saying, ‘How can I help?’” he said.

Fr. Brockland
As pastor of Sts. Joachim and Ann Parish in St. Charles for the past 16 years, he’s seen great collaboration among different groups in St. Charles, Lincoln and Warren counties through Sts. Joachim and Ann Care Service. “Developing those relationships and expanding everyone's understanding of how our roles are complementary, and not competitive, I think has been a significant thing,” he said. “So the more that we can do that in various areas of the Church's life and the way that we try to extend and implement the Gospel, I think, can only make us more effective.”

By engaging with the pastors and parish staff in his vicariate regularly, “We can have maybe a more aerial view than an individual pastor has on the ground,” he said. “And then we might be able to provide suggestions to pastors and their neighboring pastors about things that they could be doing collaboratively that maybe would result in a richer experience for their folks than what they're each trying to do individually.”

Fr. Lydon
Father Lydon said that fostering fraternity among priests and supporting them in their ministry is another crucial role of the episcopal vicars.

“One priest I know described the episcopal vicar as being pastor to the pastors. So my relationship with the other pastors and priests is critical to the success of this model,” he said. “It seems to me that if they can trust me, we can talk frankly to one another and talk about how we can better our evangelical efforts to proclaim the Gospel, to have a more vibrant sacramental life, to have better youth ministry, ministry to the elderly, everything.”

Collaborating closely with the episcopal vicars, Father Scheble knows he will have the chance to work with parishes going through transitions. He knows from experience how difficult that can be, he said.

Fr. Scheble
“What I do bring from having done mergers and consolidations: I know they can work. I know you can get through them. I know there can be a new energy; there can be a chance for a restart,” he said.

He hopes to help communities look at the possibilities that could open from change. “You get the community together and say, ‘OK, what do you want this to look like? This is our chance to kind of start from scratch,’” he said. “What will work best for all of us? What would you like to see in your, quote, new parish, and let's make it happen.”

Implementation of the vicariate structure will take effect in July. Vicariate office locations and parish residences for the episcopal vicars are still in the works.

Each vicariate includes two deaneries — smaller geographic groupings of parishes that will collaborate and support one another. The archdiocese previously had 10 deaneries, each with a dean elected by the priests within that territory. Deans of the six new deaneries have not yet been selected.

Vicariate maps

Northern Vicariate, deanery 1
 

Northern Vicariate Deanery 1

St. Ferdinand Parish has received in an amalgamation the former territories of St. Martin de Porres and St. Sabina parishes.

Sacred Heart Parish has received in an amalgamation the former territories of Blessed Teresa of Calcutta and St. Rose Philippine Duchesne parishes.

A new parish is erected through the merger of Holy Name of Jesus, St. Angela Merici and St. Norbert parishes. The interim name of the new parish will be Holy Name of Jesus, St. Angela Merici and St. Norbert Parish. A permanent name for the parish will be proposed by the pastor after consulting the faithful of the parish.

Holy Spirit Parish has received in an amalgamation the former territory of St. Jude Parish.

St. Monica Parish has received in an amalgamation the former territory of St. John Bosco and St. Richard parishes.

St. Ann Parish has received in an amalgamation the former territory of Our Lady of the Presentation Parish.

Christ the King Parish has received in an amalgamation the former territories of All Saints, St. Rita, and St. Roch parishes.

The Basilica of St. Louis, King of France (Old Cathedral) Parish is decreed both a personal and territorial parish. The parish is assuming the territory of the former St. John the Apostle and Evangelist Parish.

A new parish is erected through the merger of Our Lady of the Holy Cross; St. Augustine; St. Elizabeth, Mother of John the Baptist and St. Matthew the Apostle parishes. The interim name of the new parish will be Our Lady of the Holy Cross, St. Augustine, St. Elizabeth, Mother of John the Baptist and St. Matthew the Apostle Parish. A permanent name for the parish will be proposed by the pastor after consulting the faithful of the parish.

A new parish is erected through the merger of Most Holy Trinity, St. Nicholas and Sts. Teresa and Bridget parishes. The interim name of the new parish will be Most Holy Trinity, St. Nicholas and Sts. Teresa and Bridget Parish. A permanent name for the parish will be proposed by the pastor after consulting the faithful of the parish.

Northern Vicariate, deanery 2

Northern Vicariate Deanery 2

Our Lady of Lourdes Parish in University City has received in an amalgamation the former territory of St. Luke the Evangelist Parish.

St. Cronan Parish is suppressed. St. Cronan Church remains a sacred edifice. Baptisms and marriages celebrated at St. Cronan Church will be recorded at St. Margaret of Scotland Parish, the territorial parish in which St. Cronan Church is located. All ecclesiastical records of St. Cronan Parish will be forwarded to the archdiocesan archives.

Sts. Peter and Paul Parish is suppressed. Sts. Peter and Paul Church remains a sacred edifice. Baptisms and marriages celebrated at Sts. Peter and Paul Church will be recorded at St. Vincent de Paul Parish, the territorial parish in which Sts. Peter and Paul Church is located. All ecclesiastical records of Sts. Peter and Paul Parish will be forwarded to the archdiocesan archives.

St. Stephen Protomartyr has received in an amalgamation the former territories of Immaculate Heart of Mary and St. John the Baptist parishes.

St. Mark Parish has received in an amalgamation the former territories of St. Andrew, St. Bernadette, St. Martin of Tours and St. Matthias parishes.

A new parish is erected through the merger of Our Lady of Sorrows, Church of the Magdalen (St. Mary Magdalen) and St. Joan of Arc parishes. The interim name of the new parish will be Our Lady of Sorrows, St. Mary Magdalen and St. Joan of Arc Parish. A permanent name for the parish will be proposed by the pastor after consulting the faithful of the parish.

Seven Holy Founders Parish has received in an amalgamation the former territory of St. John Paul II Parish.

St. Michael the Archangel Parish has received in an amalgamation the former territory of Cure of Ars Parish.

St. Mary Magdalen Parish in Brentwood has received in an amalgamation the former territory of Immaculate Conception Parish in Maplewood.

Southern Vicariate, deanery 3

Southern Vicariate Deanery 3

A new parish is erected through the merger of Immaculate Conception and St. David parishes. The interim name of the new parish will be Immaculate Conception and St. David Parish. A permanent name for the parish will be proposed by the pastor after consulting the faithful of the parish.

Southern Vicariate, deanery 4

Southern Vicariate Deanery 4

St. Joachim Parish has received in an amalgamation the former territories of St. Joseph (in Tiff) and St. Stephen parishes.

St. Joseph Parish in Farmington has received in an amalgamation the former territory of St. Catherine of Alexandria Parish.

Immaculate Conception Parish has received in an amalgamation the former territory of St. John the Apostle Mission in Bismarck. All former members of St. John the Apostle Mission, regardless of their domicile, become members of Immaculate Conception Parish.

Ste. Genevieve Parish has received in an amalgamation the former territory of Sts. Philip and James Parish.

St. Agnes Parish has received in an amalgamation the former territory of St. Lawrence Parish.

Western Vicariate, deanery 5

Western Vicariate Deanery 5

St. Clare Parish has received in an amalgamation the former territory of St. Francis of Assisi Parish.

Assumption Parish has received in an amalgamation the former territory of St. Paul Parish.

Western Vicariate, deanery 6

Western Vicariate Deanery 6

St. Juan Diego Parish is erected as a new personal parish for those of Hispanic language and heritage. In the interim, the parish will use the land and buildings formerly belonging to St. Barnabas the Apostle Parish.

St. Charles Borromeo Parish has received in an amalgamation the former territory of St. Francis of Assisi Parish.

St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Parish has received in an amalgamation the former territory of St. Robert Bellarmine Parish.

Assumption Parish has received in an amalgamation the former territory of St. Barnabas the Apostle Parish.

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