"It's not always easy, but we have to be open and honest when we face difficulties..." "It's great when a comunity comes together to have an open and honest discussion about the future."
Let's face some facts here. The Archdiocese is basically telling the parishes and schools, that the problem is your problem, not our (the Archdiocese) problem. If you want a school next year, you have to raise X amount of dollars.
Now, the one good thing is that they are giving parishes more time to come up with the cash but still, they are putting the full burden on them.
The article discusses the process and the success of the consolidation of St. Mark the Evangelist (Hyattsville) and St. Camillus (Silver Spring). However, they are not telling you the full story.
1. St. Mark's was told that in order to remain open, they had to come up with $90,000. They came up with $86,000. But guess what, they were told that since they did not get the $90K, they were merging. You didn't hear about this in the Standard.
2. The the St. Francis International School was launched with great fanfare. However, enrollment is less than projected. Many of the St. Mark parents have sent their children elsewhere. In addition, there were layoffs at the start of the year due to this low enrollment. Neither of these facts were shared with you.
Look folks, the bottom line is that Cardinal-elect Wuerl is looking to shut down a number of Catholic schools. Remember when I wrote about this during the discussion of the policy and I was told that there were no plans to close any school down. What happened just a few months later? Do you really believe that they did not have a couple of schools in their sights?
Cardinal-elect Wuerl is doing it gradually and not in one fell swoop, like they did a number of years ago in DC. It prevents a public relations disaster and also keeps the awareness down to a bare minimum. If you close one or two schools this year, and one or two next, you really don't notice it (or may not hear about it) like you would 10 or 12 at a time.*
In addition, he and the Archdiocese are not going to take the heat for the closings..they are firmly placing the burden on the parishes. By placing it on you, it absolves the Archdiocese.
What do you think?
UPDATE (7am): Just this morning, a friend of mine informed me that up to 15 Catholic Schools (affecting over 4.000 students) may close in the Archdiocese of NYC. It has made the major newspapers and will be in the media for the next few months.
BOYCOTT THE CCHD COLLECTION LATER THIS MONTH!