Right to Eucharist: Detroit Priests, Laity Take Action
On March 19 Fr. Jim Coriden and FutureChurch’s Emily Holtel-Hoag
gave a presentation to over 200 people on The Parish in a
Time of Diminishing Numbers of Priests at Sacred Heart Church in
Detroit. “Many, many parishes now in our country are without the
Sunday celebration of the Eucharist, because there aren’t enough
priests; and we won’t let anybody else lead the celebration of the
Eucharist,” said Coriden. “...And that’s in a sense an infringement of
the basic rights of the parish—I’m talking about Canons 213 and 214
specifically in that one.” (The full text of Coriden’s presentation is
available at www.elephantsinthelivingroom.com).
Holtel-Hoag spoke about FutureChurch’s Do Not Stifle the
Spirit! statement naming best practices for preserving vibrant
parishes and addressed proactive strategies for keeping parishes open
contained in FutureChurch’s Save Our Parish Community resource.
The talk was sponsored by Elephants in the Living Room, a Detroit group of priests and laity committed to preserving urban parishes.
After the forum, the Elephants group established an ad hoc committee composed of two priests and one lay person to meet with parish teams who are discerning their future to offer materials and counsel not being provided by the Archdiocese Department of Parish Life. The most vulnerable parishes are those within the city of Detroit.