More Responses to Questions and Concerns About Parish Merging
Q: How would money that has been raised by various groups (such as PCCW, Holy Name Society, Religious Education, etc.) in each original parish be handled? Would it be shared in a merged parish?
A: At this time in our three parishes, only St. Mary’s and St. Kilian’s still have active PCCW (Parish Council of Catholic Women) groups. St. Michael’s PCCW is no longer active, but various members of the parish have taken on some of the things the PCCW has traditionally done. In a merged parish, we would have essentially one PCCW. However, the original two parish PCCWs from St. Kilian’s and St. Mary’s would function like “Circles” for their respective churches. As pastor, I would encourage those Circles to work together on at least one event (fundraiser, social, etc.) a year for the whole merged parish. Beyond that, groups could decide amongst themselves to what extent they might like to work together on other things. They may decide as Circles to do things for their respective churches throughout the year, and that could include fundraising for their respective particular church building and grounds.
At this time, only St. Mary’s still has a Holy Name Society, which coordinates the annual St. Mary’s Lenten Fish Fry. It would be up to the members of the Holy Name Society to determine how they would like to fundraise in the future following a merger. As a merged parish, their membership could be open to members of the other two original parishes. Therefore, it would be up to them to decide to either broaden the scope of their fundraising beyond St. Mary’s church and grounds, or, they could still maintain that the proceeds from the fish fry be designated solely for the maintenance of St. Mary’s church and grounds, and anyone who wishes could take part.
As for Religious Education, much is still being worked out regarding how this would be structured in our merged parish. Regardless of the number of sites and instruction times that we would have, having one program centrally organized by one director is what we would like to work toward. That said, any fundraising would best be done for the whole program following the merger.