Priest shortage will mean end of regular weekend Masses —Ireland bishop

Warning that vocations crisis is worsening

PUBLISHED RECENTLY ONLINE, a news item expressed the concern of a Catholic bishop over a problem facing the clergy in Ireland hat he sees will gravely impact the laity. The following are excerpts of the news item:

  • Due to he decline in priest numbers, in the Diocese of Kerry in Ireland there were now six parishes out of 53 without a resident priest.
  •  According to Bishop Ray Browne, soon it will not be possible to have a weekend Mass in every church in the diocese.
  •  The lack of resident full-time priests in Kerry’s churches will mean parishioners will have to attend Sunday Mass in neighbouring churches …, the bishop said.
  •  The parish of Knocknagoshel is the latest to be hit by the vocations crisis It has lost its resident priest.
  •  The neighboring diocese of Cork and Ross is also concerned about an ageing and declining cohort of priests.
  •  In Limerick there were 10 parishes in the diocese without a resident priest in active ministry, though four of these had retired priests living in them.
  •  Bishop Brendan Leahy, of Limerick, said that they are facing many challenges due to the decline in vocations.
  •  Diarmuid Hogan of the diocese of Galway, Kilmacduagh and Kilfenora, believes that in the years ahead parishes will have to be “consolidated with larger congregations at fewer Masses in fewer, larger buildings.”

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