Archbishop Institutes Structure to Strengthen Relationship Between Bishop, Priests, and Parishes

April 12, 2015

Dear Fellow Parishioners,

Important news from Archbishop Nienstedt:

Dear Friends in Christ,

arch logo“Bishops govern the particular churches entrusted to them as the vicars and ambassadors of Christ. This they do by their counsel, exhortation and example…A bishop must keep before his eyes the example of the Good Shepherd, who came not to be ministered unto, but to minister and lay down his life for his sheep.” Lumen Gentium

As an expression of a shepherd’s care for this local Church, I have instituted a regional vicariate structure to strengthen the relationship between myself and our priests as well as to affirm and reinforce the bond between the archbishop and our parishes.

Beginning in 2012, the three regional vicars I appointed early in 2011 will begin visiting the parishes in each of the regions. Each parish will be visited by a regional vicar once every three years. The Vicar for Latino Ministry will also be involved in visits at Latino Ministry parishes.

These visitations will help engage pastors and parish leadership in discussion about how to grow and develop the parish and increase the parish’s effectiveness in carrying out the mission of the Church. While the visits are administrative in nature, as required under canon law, they are not intended to be solely a bureaucratic exercise. Rather, the visits are intended to provide pastoral encouragement for the priests and the parishes.

These visits should also help increase better connection with and strengthen collaboration between neighboring parishes and between parishes in a deanery, as well as throughout the local Church, as envisioned under the Strategic Plan for the Archdiocese.

Please join me in praying for the success of these efforts, so that together we may be drawn ever closer into an ecclesial communion of faith, hope, and love.

With every good wish, I remain,
Cordially yours in Christ,
The Most Reverend John C. Nienstedt Archbishop of Saint Paul and Minneapolis

Our visitation will be taking place this coming week. I have invited the Parish Council, the Finance Council, the Trustees, and our staff to participate in this gathering. A report will be issued to the parish in the coming weeks. Keep us all in your prayers.

Easter peace, Fr. Brian