Fresh off an announcement by the Archdiocese of Philadelphia about plans to merger several West Philadelphia Catholic parishes, the diocese said today it has further mergers in the works in North Philadelphia.
“The mergers announced today were based on a combination of factors, including, but not limited to, demographic shifts in Catholic populations, concentrated density of parishes in a limited geographic area, history of declining Mass attendance and sacramental activity, increasing economic challenges that threaten sustainability, a decrease in the availability of clergy to staff parishes, and a review of facilities,” according to a statement from the diocese.Mergers break down as follows and are effective Jan. 27:
Saint Hugh of Cluny Parish at 145 W. Tioga St. and Saint Veronica Parish at 533 W. Tioga St. will merge at the location of and keep the name of Saint Veronica Parish. The Saint Hugh of Cluny church will remain as a worship site for the time being.
Announcements are expected soon for Holy Innocents, Mater Dolorosa, Saint Joachim and Saint Joan of Arc parishes, as well as Saint Barbara, Saint Donato and Saint Rose of Lima parishes in West Philadelphia.
The mergers are part of the Parish Pastoral Planning Area initiative, which began in 2011 to study sustainability and growth in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.