In the last seven years, including this year, the Diocese of Providence has lost 54 priests from the active ministry. 45 of these are the result of retirement; 9 for other reasons. In the same time-frame we have had only 15 new priests ordained. This rapid change will continue for the foreseeable future, as more priests retire and fewer are ordained.
Everyone in the Diocese will feel the consequences of this decline – many changes in clergy assignments, fewer priests for parishes and special ministries, changes in Mass schedules. This pastoral situation will require everyone’s understanding and patience.
We are all so grateful to the priests of the Diocese who continue to serve with outstanding generosity, responding to the spiritual needs of God’s People to the very best of their ability. Our senior priests too continue to provide assistance in many valuable ways! Please pray for and work for more vocations to the priesthood for the Church in the Diocese of Providence, so that in the future there will be sufficient shepherds to serve you.