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“Team ministry” launched in Pittsburgh

Deacon Greg Kandra - published on 07/02/15

Hot on the heels of the announcement that some deacons will serve as parish administrators, the the Diocese of Pittsburgh has rolled out its pilot program in the experiment: 

Bishop David Zubik has announced a “team ministry” pilot program that includes a deacon administrator for five parishes in Greene County as part of new, innovative ways to serve the people of God. Father J. Francis Frazer, currently pastor of St. Ann Parish in Waynesburg and St. Thomas in Clarksville; Father John Bauer, pastor of St. Hugh in Carmichaels and Our Lady of Consolation in Nemacolin; and Father Lawrence Holpp, pastor of St. Ignatius of Antioch in Bobtown, together will be responsible for the spiritual and pastoral care of all five parishes. David_Allen_ZubikDeacon Thomas Raymond will serve as a deacon administrator, running the day-to-day operations of the parishes. The appointments are effective July 13. There are no plans to change the weekend or weekday Mass schedules in any of the parishes at this time. “It is my prayer that this pilot will become one model of new ways that we can be The Church Alive! in our communities,” Bishop Zubik said in a letter to Greene County parishioners, “so that Catholic ministry and outreach can be strengthened and grow as vigorously as it did in the days of the Apostles.” The three priests will celebrate Mass, hear confessions and provide for the sacramental life in all five parishes. They also will share in the pastoral care of the faithful in hospitals and nursing homes, jails and the state prison in Waynesburg. Father Frazer will be the priest moderator, ensuring that all members of the team work together. Deacon Raymond currently serves at St. Oliver Plunkett Parish in Fredericktown and Marianna. In his new assignment as deacon administrator of the five Greene County parishes he will organize and schedule the clergy and lay ministry and have the authority to assist with matters of finances, personnel and administration. “His work in overseeing the administrative aspect of all five parishes will allow your priests to focus more on serving your spiritual and pastoral needs,” Bishop Zubik wrote parishioners. Deacon Elbert Kuhns of St. Thomas Parish and Deacon James Sheil of St. Ann Parish will be released from their current assignments in order to serve all five parishes.

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