Cleansing Fire

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Irondequoit Easter Attendance 2011 vs. 2010

April 28th, 2011, Promulgated by Dr. K

We have written here before about lower attendance in the new Irondequoit parish (Blessed Kateri) since Masses were eliminated by Fr. Tanck at St. Thomas the Apostle and St. Salome churches. As of March 14th, attendance was averaging about 705 less this year than in 2010 when all five Irondequout Pastoral Planning Group churches will open. In this article, we will take a look at the Easter attendance totals for the five Irondequoit parishes in 2010 and compare these numbers with the 2011 attendance figure for the unified Blessed Kateri parish comprised of three remaining churches.

From the Blessed Kateri bulletin:

2010 parish-by-parish on Easter

Christ the King: 2,048
St. Margaret Mary: 1,291
St. Cecilia: 1,195
St. Thomas the Apostle: 804
St. Salome: 352

2010 Easter total: 5,690

2011 Easter total: 4,104

Difference 2010/2011: 1,586 less people this Easter

Isn’t it about time to “reopen” St. Thomas the Apostle church, Fr. Tanck?

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28 Responses to “Irondequoit Easter Attendance 2011 vs. 2010”

  1. avatar Mike says:

    That’s a 28% drop in one year.

    It took almost 10 years for DOR to lose that high a percentage of its weekend Mass attendees.

  2. avatar militia says:

    but this time they had a Tanck doing the job for them.

  3. avatar Anonymous says:

    The decrease is consistent (although not proportionate) to the fall in $$ and attendance throughout the diocese, and the country.

    Blame the pope, not the bishop!

  4. avatar Dr. K says:

    This massive decline is in ONE YEAR! Come on, anon.

  5. avatar annon. says:

    Annon98121. Blame this!

  6. avatar Scott W. says:

    although not proportionate

    This is the key element. One subject at a time please.

  7. avatar Anonymous says:

    Blame the pope for falling attendance in the Diocese of Rochester? What?

  8. avatar annonymouse says:

    In fairness to Fr. Tank, Easter 2011 (and all of Holy Week) was on school break. Because many families go away, Rochester area church attendance in general will have been lower. I know many who were away this year for Easter.

    Now were 28% away? Doubt it.

  9. avatar Simon says:

    I disagree. We shouldn’t make excuses for poor attendance. As an old nun once said, “IT IS WHAT IT IS!!”. Due to economics more people stayed in this area this year than any other year. More and more people are discouraged with the antics on Buffalo road. We all need prayer now more than ever and still people are falling away.

  10. avatar Jim says:

    Jim M. here: A few years ago, when the talk of clustering parishes was abounding in Irondequoit, many of us from St. Thomas warned the IPPG, that fewer people would come to Sunday Mass if parishes were clustered and then closed. They didn’t listen, and now Blessed Kateri is struggling financially. When the same situation is repeated over and over again, you would think that people would catch on! If either St. Margaret Mary’s, or St. Cecelia’s Parish closes (or God forbid both), Blessed Kateri will be in such a financial hole, that they will never be able to dig themselves out!

  11. avatar Monk says:

    These losses are just the beginning! Wait until Frs. Horan and Leone are gone. Many parishioners are very upset that they are both leaving less than a year after the closing of their parishes. We’ll see if this paves the way for the bishop to appoint a couple of women lay administrators relegating any priests to “sacramental ministers” (excluding Fr. Tanck, of course)!

  12. avatar STA says:

    Whenever the DOR closes any parish(s) and clusters it with those around it, people leave— that is evident in every cluster in this diocese. They then cut priests, reduce masses and then attendance ( and $$) falls. They move all the original priests away because they do not support the clustering and closing of the churches, and then people get more upset– and even less come and donate.

    Its a terrible circle that i’ve seen over and over and over during the past 15 years in this diocese. I guess the take home point of my rant is: Hang tight people of Irondequoit— you have only seen the beginning!

  13. avatar Louis E. says:

    So attendance has Tancked…but what’s the solution?

  14. avatar annon. says:

    Solution? New Bishop.

  15. avatar Dr. K says:

    In fairness to Fr. Tank, Easter 2011 (and all of Holy Week) was on school break. Because many families go away, Rochester area church attendance in general will have been lower. I know many who were away this year for Easter.

    An interesting thought. I went through several bulletins comparing Easter attendance numbers from 2010 to 2011. In the majority of parishes, the number of attendees actually increased this year.

    Here are a couple examples:

    Greece/Charlotte

    (excl. St. Lawrence who doesn’t publish attendance figures and Mother of Sorrows who does not have a regularly updated online bulletin)

    Parish 2010 2011
    Holy Cross 2,019 2,258
    St. John the Evangelist 1,876 1,807
    St. Mark 1,386 1,195
    Holy Name of Jesus 360 587
    Our Lady of Mercy 298 closed
    St. Charles Borromeo 2,308 2,453
    Total 8,247 8,300

    Greece/Charlotte attendance increased by 53.

    Brighton/City SE

    Parish 2010 2011
    St. Thomas More 1,190 1,006
    Our Lady Queen of Peace 865 1,195
    St. Anne 598 674
    Our Lady of Lourdes 885 1,044
    Total 3,538 3,919

    Brighton/City SE attendance increased by 381.

    Remember: Irondequoit attendance decreased by 1,586.

    It is also worth pointing out that the Our Lady of Mercy numbers following the closure were largely absorbed by Holy Name and Holy Cross. This has NOT taken place in Irondequoit with people from the “closed” St. Thomas and St. Salome churches. Most of these Catholics have stayed away from the new Irondequout parish.

  16. avatar Order says:

    Dr. K – Good analyisis. This reader assumed that those “missing” simply went elsewhere as well. Thanks for your efforts to demonstrate this hunch. Interesting to note would be: what was 2010 vs 2011 Easter #’s for: St. Stanislas, and Our Lady of Victory. I know we’ll see increases there as well – similar to Holy Cross.
    When Bishop Clark leaves, things can only improve, in my opinion. But Rome hasn’t helped things here either. Thanks to the good efforts of Mike Macaluso and James Likudis, Rome has had piles of first – hand evidence hand delivered to them over the years w/ regards to the nonsense that Bishop Clark has turned a blind eye to (or promoted out right). Little has changed despite those efforts. This reader says 50/50 is the blame. Thanks Mike & Jim for your good efforts over the years.

  17. avatar Anonymous says:

    You have to take into consideration that Easter Sunday was during Spring Break and many families were on vacation. Someone mentioned that the new Irondequoit Parish is struggling financially, where is the basis in that statement. I know several people who work with the new parish and they told me finances are doing better then they had expected. According to the posts on this website the majority of the people from STA have found other places to worship (although I wonder how accurate those statements are since I see many STA at Sunday masses at BK) so what is the point in opening STA even for one Easter Mass?

  18. avatar Anonymous says:

    Anon-72185
    I am a former member of St. Thomas Apostle and I can tell you that the few times I have attended Mass at BKT parish, I hardly see ANYONE from STA at these Masses. Maybe a few here and there but if I want to see my fellow STA parishioners, I attend at other parishes outside of Irondequoit. I am amazed at how few STA parishioners attend Mass at BKT. If they do attend it is mostly for convenience and are not really engaged in the new parish. There was a huge injustice perpetrated on the parishioners of Irondequoit. The only way this will ever be rectified is with a new bishop with a true Catholic agenda for our parishes. Also, STA parishioners are still waiting to hear the result of their canon law petition before the Vatican court. There is some modest hope that the Vatican will still intervene in this tragedy based on its merit. STA parishioners don’t just want their church open, they want their parish rights returned to them which were unjustly stripped from them by a corrupt diocese. This will happen soon enough!

  19. avatar Anonymous says:

    To Anon 9153:
    Amen!!
    Well said!!

  20. avatar JLo says:

    Jim says, “If either St. Margaret Mary’s, or St. Cecelia’s Parish closes (or God forbid both), Blessed Kateri will be in such a financial hole, that they will never be able to dig themselves out!”

    I may be overly cynical, but I believe that the sale of the churches in Irondequoit was always in the planning, so I wouldn’t worry about any “hole” Fr. Tanck or the bishop find themselves in… they want one new building and they are taking the baby steps necessary to get to that “need”, which is why STA is such a stumbling block for them… it’s large enough to serve the entire town!! Gotta get rid of STA!

    As to Anonymous-72185 looking for evidence that BK is not doing well financially, how about Fr. Tanck’s January letter stating such and looking for money to compensate the shortfall?

    +JMJ

  21. avatar Anonymous says:

    Read Mike’s post just below this one “The church the women and the bishop want” to get a good understanding of what (and why) the DoR is doing in Irondequoit. They want a different church. They need to first get rid of parishes, catholic schools, and priests. They preyed on Irondequoit because from their perspective it is a weak “has been” town with an aging population and not much wealth left. It was easy pickings for their destruction. Nothing will stop them until we get a new bishop.

  22. avatar robert norton says:

    “Thou shall love your neighbor as yourself” is the second commandment that Jesus christ gave us.

  23. avatar Dr. K says:

    Anonymous-72185: “You have to take into consideration that Easter Sunday was during Spring Break and many families were on vacation.”

    Anonymouse brought up that possibility in this comment above, but I provided evidence to the contrary in this one. The Irondequoit parish lost 1,586 people from last Easter. Parishes in Greece, Brighton and a host of other areas witnessed increases in Mass attendance from 2010 to 2011. If you’re going to use Spring Break as an excuse in Irondequoit, how does one explain increases most everywhere else in the diocese?

    Someone mentioned that the new Irondequoit Parish is struggling financially, where is the basis in that statement. I know several people who work with the new parish and they told me finances are doing better then they had expected.

    Read this letter from Fr. Tanck asking his parishioners for more money because of a “financial crisis.” Furthermore, Blessed Kateri is $98,892 short of its 2010/1 CMA requirement. This tax must be paid by the parish.

  24. avatar Jim says:

    Jim M. here: Thanks for your input, Dr. K. I have spoken with some members of the Christ the King BKT site, who are very involved in that parish, and they told me personally that the finances in the cluster have gone down in the past year.

  25. avatar Scott W. says:

    “Thou shall love your neighbor as yourself” is the second commandment that Jesus christ gave us.

    Thanks robert. I agree completely. Was there anything in particular you had in mind when you posted this?

  26. avatar Anonymous says:

    [Comment deleted by moderator — Now the lies in your previous post make sense; you hate STA. Your obvious delight in the suffering of others is shameful]

  27. avatar Thinkling says:

    Rome has had piles of first – hand evidence hand delivered to them over the years w/ regards to the nonsense that Bishop Clark has turned a blind eye to (or promoted out right). Little has changed despite those efforts. This reader says 50/50 is the blame.

    As I have been getting up to speed with the mismanagement of the diocese, the same often struck me, why isn’t Benedict doing more to straighten out this implosion? I have come to the opinion that he is afraid of schism, and is willing to let the fire burn itself out rather than risk discharging sparks by trying to put it out and having them start other fires. Any schism is a Bad Thing. But a schism headed by a validly ordained bishop is another thing altogether: the broken organization can confer Holy Orders to perpetuate itself.

    If this is true, I will withold judgment as to whether this course is the best one. But certainly I can see the merit in it.

  28. avatar Dr. K says:

    But a schism headed by a validly ordained bishop is another thing altogether: the broken organization can confer Holy Orders to perpetuate itself.

    Just look at the SSPX. It is a legitimate concern. The biological solution may very well prove to be the best course of action (inaction?) the Holy Father could take.


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