September 6, 2013

Vatican denies petitions to keep Holy Rosary Parish in Seelyville open

Criterion staff report

The Vatican’s Congregation for the Clergy has denied petitions by four people in the Terre Haute Deanery who were seeking to have the merger of Holy Rosary Parish in Seelyville with Annunciation Parish in Brazil rescinded.

The petitioners were informed of the Congregation’s decision last week. The Congregation denied the petitions on both substantive and procedural grounds.

Holy Rosary Parish was one of four parishes in the Terre Haute Deanery that were closed in 2011 and 2012 as a result of the “Connected in the Spirit” planning process.

Although Holy Rosary Parish has merged with Annunciation Parish, Holy Rosary Church has remained open for limited sacred use, such as weddings and funerals. A Mass will be celebrated at Holy Rosary Church on the Feast of the Holy Rosary at 6 p.m. on Oct. 7.

In a letter informing the petitioners of the Congregation’s decision, Archbishop Joseph W. Tobin wrote: “I realize that this development is the latest disappointment for you and those associated with the recourse to the Holy See. I pray that your faith in Jesus Christ and your love for the Church may carry you through this latest development to a deeper trust in God’s providence and faithful love. I assure you of my continuing interest and pastoral care.”

Archbishop Tobin also told the petitioners that under canon law, the law of the Church, they have one final course of action and they can appeal the Congregation for the Clergy’s decision to the Supreme Tribunal of the Apostolic Signatura in Rome. †

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