CHICAGO (CBS) — The Archdiocese of Chicago announced Friday the consolidations of 19 parishes and schools into five “groupings” after crunching some numbers.
Starting next year, many of the parishes will combine into one or two churches depending on the needs of the communities.
Parishioners packed a tense meeting Friday night inside St. Thecla — one of the churches set to unite on Chicago’s northwest side in the “Milwaukee Avenue North” grouping. Parents and students worried about transitioning schools and some were upset about the plan.
“Objectively, any person that sat down and (looked) at this knows they made the wrong decision tonight,” said Luke Schutt, a graduate of St. Thecla.
Church leaders acknowledged the plan would be difficult for some.
“We need to rally our forces and concentrate our resources in one site and two sites will be left out of that, and I can understand entirely how that would be painful,” said Bishop Mark Bartosic.
As of July 1, St. Thecla and St. Cornelius will essentially move into nearby St. Tarcissus.
The full list of mergings is as follows:
Hegewisch and Burnham
- St. Columba Parish
- St. Florian Parish
- Mother of God Parish
- St. Alphonsus Parish
- St. Alphonsus/St. Patrick School
- Ss. Cyril and Methodius Parish and School
- St. James at Sag Bridge Parish
- St. Patrick Parish
- St. Hilary Parish and School
- St. Matthias Parish and School
- Queen of Angels Parish and School
- Transfiguration of Our Lord Parish
Milwaukee Avenue North
- St. Cornelius Parish
- St. Tarcissus Parish
- St. Thecla Parish and School
- Pope Francis Global Academy’s North campus
East Little Village
- Assumption B.V.M. Parish
- Our Lady of Tepeyac Parish and School
- St. Roman Parish
More details of the consolidation plan and next steps can be found here.