Local News

Parishes in Philadelphia, Chester Co., evaluated

Seven parishes in Northwest Philadelphia and four parishes in Coatesville, Chester County, submitted written recommendations for Archbishop Charles Chaput’s consideration regarding merging, consolidating or closing some of the parishes in those Pastoral Planning Areas (PPAs). The proposals were due Feb. 15, and will be discussed among the parish pastors and a Strategic Planning Committee comprised of archdiocesan experts in several aspects of Church life. PPA 540 includes nine parishes located in the Germantown, Mount Airy and Oak Lane sections of Philadelphia and a detailed study of seven of those parishes began last October. The parishes affected are St. Vincent de Paul, founded in 1851; St. Francis of Assisi, founded in 1899; Immaculate Conception, founded in 1902; St. Benedict, founded in 1922; St. Therese of the Child Jesus, founded in 1925; St. Athanasius, founded in 1928; and St. Raymond of Penafort, founded in 1941.

Attending St. Dot’s a family tradition

Legacy families add up at school When Brian Gallagher and his wife Trisha (McCalla) Gallagher went to an open house last year at St. Dorothy School in Drexel Hill, it was like walking into a class reunion. Like themselves, their grade school classmates from the 1980s are now parents of children who go to school […]

Raising funds for Catholic schools

Catholic education is of utmost importance to Al Gabriele, a retired businessman and entrepreneur, whose career most recently was in the printing field. A member of St. Rose of Lima Parish in North Wales, he recently finished chairing a highly successful $25 million capital campaign for La Salle College High School in Wyndmoor. It took […]

Children’s mission of mercy feeds the hungry, homeless

Kick boxing, piano lessons, St. Mary Interparochial School, food preparation and Mercy Hospice. What on earth could they have in common? It’s complicated. About 10 kids attending the lower grades at St. Mary, located in Olde City, Philadelphia, meet at the home of the Holahan family every Friday after school for piano lessons, which are […]

Archbishop Chaput: High schools will stay open, new foundation will aid Catholic schools

Archbishop Charles Chaput announced in dramatic fashion today at a press conference that all four archdiocesan Catholic high schools that had been recommended for closure would remain open. As the archbishop made the announcement at the Archdiocesan Pastoral Center in Philadelphia, where he was joined with some of the top state legislative leaders and local […]

Archdiocese of Philadelphia welcomes new chief financial officer

Timothy O’Shaughnessy, 48, has been named chief financial officer of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia effective April 16, according to a statement today by the archdiocesan Communications Office. O’Shaughnessy most recently served as CFO for St. Joseph’s Preparatory School in Philadelphia since 2008. In that role he was responsible for overseeing all finance-related matters including the […]

Devon Prep student recalls recent visit to Haiti

Just over two years ago a devastating earthquake hit the small country of Haiti destroying the capital city of Port au Prince, killing thousands of people and leaving even more homeless.The country received aid from around the world in the months after the earthquake, but two years later the needs of the Haitian people continue […]

Father Cantalamessa speaks at St. Mary Magdalen in Media

As the Church in America continues to shoulder the cross brought about by clergy sexual abuse, and as the local Church of Philadelphia faces the possible merging and closure of parishes and schools due to the declining number of active priests to staff them, the role of the laity is becoming more and more prevalent. […]

Affected schools in Blue Ribbon Commission appeals process

BUCKS COUNTY SCHOOLS St. John the Baptist, Ottsville: Remains a parish school St. Philip Neri, Pennsburg (Montco): Regional school form with St. Isidore, building closes St. Isidore, Quakertown: Regional school to form with St. Philip at this location St. Michael the Archangel, Levittown: Remains a parish school Our Lady of Grace School, Penndel: Remains a […]

Archdiocese announces final decisions on appeals for Catholic grade schools

The final decision on closings or consolidations of archdiocesan elementary schools as recommended by the Blue Ribbon Commission on Jan. 6 and as modified through an appeals process ordered by Archbishop Charles Chaput was released Feb. 17 in conjunction with a morning press briefing led by Bishop Michael J. Fitzgerald, who oversees the Catholic education in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. The commission's original recommendations called for 81 schools to form 37 regional schools. As amended, 49 schools will form 23 regional schools and 10 will close outright. The panel originally recommended only one school for closure. (See full list of schools that appealed.) A decision on the future of four archdiocesan high schools recommended for closure was postponed for approximately one week, because of the emergence of potential donors working to keep them open.