The Diocese of Middlesbrough has engaged the Centre for Catholic Studies at Durham University to conduct consultation about the future shape of parishes in York. The diocese forsees that the number of priests serving the Catholic population of York may have to reduce to four, or possibly three, and is considering how these can best be deployed.
One aspect of this is the affect of any proposed reorganisation is the affect on the provision of Latin Masses in the city. I understand that Bishop Drainey wishes these Masses to continue, for which we must be grateful. However, with a declining number of priests, the bishop is going to find this increasingly difficult.
The solution that I would advocate is to invite one of the Societies of Apostolic Life that specialises in training priests to celebrate Mass in the older form, to establish a base in the city. I am talking of either the Institute of Christ the King, Sovereign Priest or the Priestly Fraternity of St Peter. Both these societies are continuing to attract good numbers of vocations and are esxpanding. They would, of course, require the use of a presbytery and of one of the churches in York. With fewer diocesan priests, this should be possible.
Any readers with an interest in the provision of Latin Masses in York are invited to send their thoughts to Dr Kath Smith who is conducting the consultation.
The contact details are:-
Dr Kath Smith
Centre for Catholic Studies
Please ensure that your comments are headed:
YORK PARISHES CONSULTATION RESPONSE.