Local News Archive
Print Issue: May 3, 1984
New Priest Council Established By Code
By Msgr. Noel C. Burtenshaw
The new Code of Canon Law touches every aspect of Church life.
In a special way, it touches the life of those who serve as priests in a diocese. The new law mandates that a Council of Priests be established and it gives to that Council a special task.
The select body, says the new law, called the Council of Priests, shall represent the Presbyterium of the diocese in the task of assisting the Bishop in the governance of the diocese so that the pastoral welfare of that portion of the people of God, entrusted to him, may be most effectively promoted.
So, the law has set out the directives and, in accordance with the law, the Council has now become a fact. It did so in this way first by election through the priests of the archdiocese and secondly by appointment of the Archbishop.
Those elected to the new Council are: from the pastors, Fathers Henry Gracz, Dan OConnor and Patrick McCormick, from the religious clergy, Fathers Robert Poandl, Thomas Carroll and Lawrence Schmuhl; from the assistant pastors, Father Richard Wise; from the priests in special ministry, Monsignor Noel Burtenshaw. Finally, elected at large are Fathers John Adamski, Bill Hoffman and David Kukielski.
To the number elected, Archbishop Thomas Donnellan has appointed the following: Fathers Edward Dillon, Raymond Horan, Richard Kieran and Richard Morrow.
Ex Officio members of the Council will be the Vicar General, Monsignor John McDonough, and Chancellor, Father Peter Ludden, who is called the Moderator of the Curia.
This new Council is to meet regularly, ordinarily once each month. The date, place and time of each meeting is to be determined by the Archbishop. This Council will elect a chairman, when elected, will meet with the Archbishop before each meeting to determine the agenda for the meeting.
The new Code of Canon Law states that the Council of Priests is to represent the Presbyterium of the diocese and assist the Archbishop to fulfill his role as chief pastor. Each new Councilor must, therefore, consider himself responsible for representing accurately the wishes and thinking of the priests he represents.
The first meeting of the newly established Council has not taken place.