Key parish facts to know about the Parish Planning Process

| September 23, 2009 | 0 Comments

St. Richard in Richfield hosted the first of eight regional parishioner meetings for the Archdiocesan Parish Planning Process. The two-hour presentation included facts and their supporting statistics about the archdiocese and its future that frame the planning process, including:

• The Catholic population in the archdiocese is growing. The total number of Catholics registered at parishes is estimated to be 650,000. By 2016, the number of Catholics registered at parishes is projected to be 695,000.

• The Catholic population is aging. From 2005 to 2015, the fastest growing age group within the Twin Cities is 55 to 69 years old.

• Socio-economic diversity and disparity is growing. The socio-economic distribution of parishes at each end of the scale is growing, while the middle is declining.

• Ethnic diversity is also growing. The distribution of Latino Catholics has changed significantly in the last 10 years. There are now significant numbers of Latino people within five minutes drive of every parish in the archdiocese. Mass is regularly celebrated throughout the archdiocese in Spanish, Korean, Vietnamese, Filipino, Hmong and French for West African parishioners.

• Many parishes and schools have financially been living beyond their means. Parish debt per registered parish household in 2006 was approximately $999, although the distribution and operating loss among parishes and schools is unevenly spread within the archdiocese.

• Fewer priests will be available to be pastors. Currently, 182 priests are eligible to be pastors in the archdiocese. In 10 years, that number is projected to drop by 19. The number of priests serving as parochial vicars and in special ministries will also decline.

• Catholic education is increasingly a challenge to grow and maintain. There were nearly 5,000 fewer children enrolled in parish faith formation programs last year than in 2004-2005. The number of children in no Catholic formation program is increasing.

• Catholic schools are facing many of the same challenges as the parishes. Ethnic and socio-economic diversity is increasing; enrollment growth and decline is uneven throughout the arch­diocese; only 2.4 percent of school personnel are priests or religious.

Source: “Key Facts about the Archdiocese” Archdiocesan Planning Process, June 2009. Find it at http://www.archspm.org/planningprocess/resources.html.

Category: Archdiocese Planning Process