Fr. Gary Tyman has announced to his parishioners at Our Lady of Mercy Church in Greece that he will be leaving the parish at the end of June. His new assignment will be Sacramental Minister at the clustered parishes of St. Anne and Our Lady of Lourdes in the SE Rochester-Brighton area.
Sr. Joan Sobala, SSJ is the Pastoral Administrator of the cluster. Fr. Tyman, with his penchant for vertical inclusive language, ought to get along famously with Sr. Joan. I can just see the scene now: Sr. Joan, wearing her alb and standing near Fr. Tyman "during the Eucharistic prayer, extending her hands [and] giving the appearance of con-celebrating." Charming.
According to two OLM parishioners who heard last Sunday's announcement, there will be no new pastor assigned to the parish. Instead, Fr. John Gagnier, currently Pastor at Holy Name of Jesus will also become Pastoral Administrator at OLM. Weekend Masses will be covered by Fr. Gagnier, as well as priests from Holy Cross and Our Mother of Sorrows. There were conflicting reports concerning weekday Mass coverage, but with Fr. Gagnier currently out of the country many such details are still up in the air.
If my sources are correct this would mark a departure from the Eastern Greece/Charlotte Pastoral Plan that I and a couple dozen others helped draft 3 years ago. That plan calls for at least one priest to be assigned to each of the 6 parishes through 2014, with that priest acting as either Pastor or Sacramental Minister. Of course, with both OLM and HNOJ each averaging just over 400 weekend Mass attendees, it's possible the diocese decided to jettison the plan and allocate its resources elsewhere.
I guess we'll just have to await further developments.