Diocese of Sagninaw to reduce services at 53 of 109 churchs across mid-MichiganJustin Engel Michigan Live Jan. 20, 2013 BAY CITY, MI — While Diocese of Saginaw officials are saying a reorganization plan doesn’t call for closing any churches yet, about half of the 11-county Catholic organization’s 109 places of worship will see many services end or decrease over the next three years. The Most Bishop Joseph Cistone, the diocese’s leader, announced the plans during an afternoon press conference in Bay City’s St. Joseph, one of the churches whose regularly-scheduled masses will end in July 2014. Cistone said the reorganization plan, which will merge parishes, categorizes churches in three categories. Those include: Parish church: This facility will serve as “the main church” where regularly-scheduled services and sacraments take place for members. Church “for additional use:” These buildings will continue to celebrate mass on weekends in most cases. “Daily mass, weddings, funerals, holy days and other parish liturgies may be celebrated in these churches at the discretion of the pastor and pastoral administrator,” Cistone said. Church “for occasional use:” These structures won’t technically be closed, but any service there would be provided only “at the discretion of the pastor or pastoral administrator,” the bishop said. Of the diocese’s 109 churches, 56 will be classified as parish churches, 24 as churches for additional use, and 29 as churches for occasional use, Cistone said. ............ Full article at Michigan Live
Berlin Archdiocese undergoing significant restructuringEstefania Aguirre Catholic News Agency Jan. 21, 2013 Berlin, Germany, Jan 21, 2013 / 09:50 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Cardinal Rainer Maria Woelki has finalized plans to cut the number of churches in the Archdiocese of Berlin by over 70 percent in seven years. The archdiocese's 105 churches will be reduced to 30 parishes by 2020, he told Katholische Nachrichten Agentur in a Jan. 16 interview. This decision, originally unveiled in a pastoral letter on Dec. 2, will affect 400,000 Catholics in northeast Germany. This means an average reduction of 11 churches a year in an area that includes Berlin, Brandenburg and Mecklenberg-Vorpommern. "This isn't just an administrative reform, it's also a spiritual one," said archdiocesan spokesman Stefan Forner. .......... Full article at Catholic News Agency Also noted in above article- In September, Cardinal Christoph Schönborn also decided to slash 510 churches in his Vienna archdiocese, reducing its number of parishes from 660 to 150.