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The Catholic Herald: Official Newspaper of the Diocese of Madison
Tornado in Stoughton
(posted 8/19/2005)

August 25, 2005 Edition   •   Volume 135, No. 29   •   Madison, Wisconsin, U.S.A.

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The Catholic Herald is the official newspaper of the Diocese of Madison. Its purpose is to inform and educate people of the Diocese through communications that proclaim Gospel values, report the news, and comment on issues as they pertain to the mission of the Catholic Church, which is to bring all in Jesus Christ to the Father.
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• Web edition: Catholic Press Association Best Web Site: Third Place, 2005.

Award of Distinction, The Communicator Awards 2002 Print Media competition.

• Print edition: Award winner, Catholic Press Association 2005 awards competition.

photo of strategic planning meeting at the Diocese of Madison

left arrow Kate Wiskus, director of the Office of Planning for the Diocese of Madison, meets with pastors regarding strategic planning. Pictured are, from left: Fr. Thomas Marr, St. Bernard Parish, Watertown; Msgr. Raymond Kertz, St. Patrick Parish, Cottage Grove; and Msgr. Kenneth Fiedler, Our Lady Queen of Peace Parish, Madison. Those attending the meeting not pictured are Fr. John Hedrick, St. Mary Parish, Pardeeville, linked with St. Andrew, Buffalo, and Bill Brophy, director of the Office of Communications. (Catholic Herald photo by Julianne Nornberg)

Planning for the future:
Diocese undertakes new process

MADISON -- Under the leadership of Bishop Robert C. Morlino, the Diocese of Madison is undertaking a new and intensive planning process.

Commenting on the need for planning, Bishop Morlino stated in the June 9, 2005 issue of the Catholic Herald:

Did you know?

Of the 133 parishes with weekend Masses, 62 or 49.6% had fewer than half of their pews filled.

Empty pews are indicators of too many Masses being offered in an area. The actual number of Masses needed is less than what is being celebrated.

The deaneries vary on the percentage of filled pews:

• Lafayette with 39%
• Grant with 47%
• West Dane with 52%
• Sauk with 53%
• Marquette-Green Lake with 59%
• Jefferson with 60%

• Madison with 43%
• Iowa with 50%
• East Dane with 52%
• Rock-Green with 54%
• Columbia with 65%

As we look at resources within the Diocese of Madison, we will consider the number of Masses needed for the population.

There are 134 parishes in the Diocese of Madison. Eighty-eight parishes (66%) share a pastor. The number of priests per parish in the deaneries are (note: all but Madison are represented by a number less than one):

• Columbia = .6
• Iowa = .6
• Madison = 1
• Rock-Green = .8

• East Dane = .9
• Jefferson = .7
• Marquette-Green Lake = .6
• Sauk = .6

• Grant = .5
• Lafayette = .4
• West Dane = .8

* Statistics drawn from the statistical reports filed by pastors annually with the Diocese of Madison.

"We must insure that we will use the generous resources provided us by the faithful to our best advantage. Planning for our future is a critical responsibility of the Bishop's. I must insure that the truth of our faith is passed on from generation to generation."

Demographic report

The first step in the process has been completed, a comprehensive demographic report on the Diocese of Madison by the Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate (CARA) at Georgetown University.

The report provides a statistically valid demographic profile for the 11 counties of the Diocese of Madison. Using information from the diocese provided by the parishes, the report further provides a candid "snapshot" of the diocese and its 134 parishes. Both are a starting point for the diocesan strategic planning process.

In-pew survey

The next major component of the planning process is the in-pew survey being prepared for parishioners. All Catholics 18 years of age or older will be asked to complete the survey in their parishes in conjunction with weekend liturgies the weekend of November 4-5, 2005.

These surveys - along with surveys completed by the priests of the diocese - will provide key information on a variety of issues concerning the future direction of the Diocese of Madison and the parishes.   Full story ...

Only in the print edition ...
News & Features:

Catholic Marriage: Special section

World Youth Day: A week of faith

Parish festival fun: Many Catholic parishes have been sponsoring festivals this summer


• Question Corner
by Fr. John Dietzen --
Lucifer, Satan: Bible contains numerous references

• The Pope Speaks
by Pope Benedict XVI -- Psalm 126:
Striving for good will bring much joy

• The Human Side
by Fr. Eugene Hemrick --
New immigrants: Embrace and accept them in our hearts

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Our Lady of the Assumption: Grade school marks 50th anniversary

BELOIT -- Fifty years of quality Catholic education will be celebrated on Labor Day weekend at Our Lady of the Assumption (OLA) School.

Central to the importance and meaning of the school is the commitment to Catholic education by Our Lady of the Assumption Parish since it was founded 52 years ago.

Weekend events

A variety of events are planned for OLA School alumni, students, parents, parish, and friends.   Full story ...

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