Establishment of the Parish

St. John XXIII Parish was established  on January 1, 2015. The letter announcing the establishment of the parish, and the legal decree, both issued on October 11, 2014 by Bishop David Zubik, are found below.

October 11, 2014
Feast of Saint John XXIII

My dear Sisters and Brothers of the Latin Mass Community:

BishopZubikLtrIt is with great joy that I announce the establishment of Saint John XXIII Personal Quasi-Parish. This new parish will serve those who participate in the celebration of Mass in the Extraordinary Form in the Diocese of Pittsburgh. This decision has followed nearly two years of prayerful dialogue and planning among members of your community, your chaplain, Father James W. Dolan, and members of my diocesan staff.

What is a personal quasi-parish? A personal parish reflects a membership that is not based on territorial boundaries but, in this case, on the celebration of the Extraordinary Form of the Mass and sacraments. A quasi-parish is a Catholic community entrusted to a pastor in which worship, ministry and evangelization take place under the Diocesan Bishop, but which is not yet fully erected as a parish. In your circumstances, there is the need for an assessment to determine whether the quasi-parish can sustain the pastoral and financial responsibilities of a parish. Your history in this regard is already impressive and I have been moved by the willingness that your members expressed to shoulder the responsibilities that this change entails.

I have issued a decree establishing Saint John XXIII Parish, effective January 1, 2015, Solemnity of Mary, the Mother of God. The Mass and other activities will be celebrated at Saint Boniface Church, North Side, and the Holy Wisdom Parish administrative staff will be responsible for the administrative work of the quasi-parish. Your current chaplain, Father Dolan, along with Father Lawrence A. DiNardo, pastor of Holy Wisdom Parish, will become co-pastors and form a team ministry that will provide pastoral care for the newly erected quasi-parish. Father DiNardo will be moderator of the team ministry of Saint John XXIII Parish. Also, Father Dolan will be responsible for the coordination of the Extraordinary Form throughout the Diocese.

Holy Wisdom Parish will continue to exist as it has since it was formed in 1994.

The pastoral council of Saint John XXIII and Holy Wisdom Parishes will be established as one body. There will also be a joint finance council, with the ability for members from each parish to consider matters that affect only that parish.

I hope this news is as much a cause for celebration for you as it has been for me. Please pray for me and I will continue to pray for you that you may be guided and protected by our dear Blessed Mother under the mantle of her love.

Grateful for our belief that “Nothing is Impossible with God,” I am

Your brother in Christ,
Most Reverend David A. Zubik
Bishop of Pittsburgh


The Decree:

DAVID ALLEN ZUBIK
By the Grace of God and the Authority of the Apostolic See
BISHOP OF PITTSBURGH
DECREE
CANONICALLY ESTABLISHING THE PERSONAL QUASI-
PARISH OF SAINT JOHN XXIII FOR THE EXTRAORDINARY
FORM OF THE MASS

Whereas, since 1989 with the promulgation of the Apostolic Letter Ecclesia Dei issued by Saint John Paul II, the celebration of the Mass of the Roman Missal of 1962 has been celebrated in the Diocese of Pittsburgh in various churches and chapels by priests assigned by the Diocesan Bishop; and

Whereas, since May of 1994 the center of the celebration of the of the Mass of the Roman Missal of 1962 has been Holy Wisdom Parish (Saint Boniface Church), located in the Northside section of the City of Pittsburgh; and

Whereas, over the years the number of Faithful who participate in the celebration of the of the Mass of the Roman Missal of 1962 has increased; and

Whereas, in accordance with the Apostolic Letter Summorum Pontificum of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, the celebration of the Mass of Saint John XXIII (Extraordinary Form) has been given wider use in the Church; and

Whereas, members of the Christian Faithful who participate in the celebration of the Mass of Saint John XXIII, and who are not legitimately impeded, have requested canonical standing for the future stability of its members;

Therefore, having received a favorable recommendation of the Episcopal Council on August 18, 2014, the Priest Council on September 18, 2014 and the Vicars General on the same day, we do hereby decree the establishment of a personal quasi-parish for those members of the Christian Faithful who desire to participate in the celebration of the Mass of Saint John XXIII (Extraordinary Form) in accordance with canon 516 §1 of the Code of Canon Law, effective at 12:01 AM, Thursday, January 1, 2015, the Solemnity of Mary, the Holy Mother of God.

The faithful who participate in this personal quasi-parish shall be those members who reside within the Diocese of Pittsburgh and shall be by ascription. Others may become members, the proper ecclesiastical norms being observed. The voluntary offerings of the faithful and all other grants that will be made to Saint John XXIII Parish shall constitute its revenue. The appointment of the pastor or (team in solidum) of the parish, and all future pastors or (teams in solidum) shall be governed by the norms of the Code of Canon Law.

We further decree that Saint Boniface Church, part of Holy Wisdom Parish, Northside, Pittsburgh, shall serve as the perpetual parish church for this personal quasi-parish and that the newly established personal quasi-parish shall be titled Saint John XXIII Parish.

Additionally, I hereby grant permission for the Pastor of Holy Wisdom Parish, the administrative center of this quasi-parish, whom I appoint as the Moderator of the team in solidum of Saint John XIII Parish to organize the Pastoral Councils of both Saint John XXIII Parish and Holy Wisdom Parish to function in a collaborative manner so as to ensure that both parish communities may mutually work for unity within the Church.

Finally, I further decree that any other organization that may have existed or exists for the purpose of supporting the Extraordinary Form in the Diocese of Pittsburgh, established by competent ecclesiastical authority or on its own, no longer represents the proper ecclesial authority and is not recognized by the same ecclesial authority. Any and all goods which may be of an ecclesial nature are to be transmitted to the proper ecclesial authority as established in this decree.

Anything to the contrary notwithstanding.

Given at Pittsburgh, this 11th day of October, memorial of Saint John XXIII, in the
Year of Our Lord two thousand and fourteen.


Letter distributed at Masses on Sunday, June 8, 2014:

QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS

REGARDING THE PROPOSED ESTABLISHMENT OF A PERSONAL QUASI·PARISH FOR THE CHRISTIAN FAITHFUL WHO PARTICIPATE IN THE MASS IN THE EXTRAORDINARY FORM

Last week Father DiNardo and Father Dolan published a letter to the Members of the Latin Mass Community regarding the possibility of establishing a personal quasi-parish for those members of the Christian Faithful who participate in the Mass in the Extraordinary Form. Over the course of this week they have received a number of clarifying questions regarding the presentation. It is hoped that these questions and answers will assist you in fully understanding the proposal. So that you might gave additional time to review this material, the survey will be taken next Sunday [June 15] before each Mass.

  1. Is the survey meant to be a vote for or against the establishment of a personal quasi-parish for the Christian Faithful who participate in the Mass in the Extraordinary Form?
    No. The survey is intended to gather information regarding those who regularly attend the Mass in the Extraordinary Form and to understand their preference for the future. The information gathered will assist in the final recommendation to the Diocesan Bishop regarding the possibility of establishing a personal quasi-parish.
  2. What is the purpose in establishing a quasi-parish for the faithful who celebrate Mass in the Extraordinary Form?
    The purpose is to establish a formal canonical (church legal) structure that will ensure the future stability of the celebration of the Mass in the Extraordinary Form in the Diocese of Pittsburgh.
  3. Will the Mass in the Extraordinary Form continue to be celebrated at Saint Boniface Church?
    Yes. Regardless of whether or not a quasi-parish is established the Mass in the Extraordinary Form will continue to be celebrated at Saint Boniface Church of Holy Wisdom Parish.
  4. Will the quasi-parish be administered by a Board of Directors (elected or appointed)?
    No. Like all parishes that are established by the church, the duly appointed pastor will administer the quasi-parish. A pastoral and finance council, who have an advisory role and selected by the pastor, will assist him. This form of administration is mandated by the Code of Canon Law.
  5. Why will there be an increase in costs for the quasi-parish?
    The quasi-parish will be responsible for the costs associated with a full-time priest, diocesan assessments, liturgical costs, administrative costs and costs for use of facilities like any parish. It is estimated that over the next five (5) years this cost will increase by approximately $200,000. Therefore it will be important that the Sunday offertory contributions to the quasi-parish will need to incrementally increased by about $40,000 each year for the next five years.
  6. Who will own the temporal goods of the quasi-parish (e.g. Vestments, sacred items and sacred vessels)?
    All temporal goods will be owned by the quasi-parish and therefore be under the jurisdiction and control of the Church.

Letter Regarding June 8 Questionnaire

Below is the letter which was distributed at Masses on Sunday, June 1, 2014:

Dear Members of the Latin Mass Community:

Over the past year and one half (18 months) a great deal of discussion has taken place between diocesan officials and some members of the Latin Mass Community regarding the possibility of establishing a quasi-parish for those individuals who participate in the Mass in the Extraordinary Form. Prior to making a final recommendation to the Diocesan Bishop, who alone is competent to establish such a parish, we are asking for you consultation regarding the proposal. Next Sunday, prior to each Mass, you will be asked to complete a questionnaire regarding your preference in establishing a quasi-parish here at Saint Boniface Church. The results of the consultation will be published in the weekly bulletin. In order that you might make a prayerful and informed response the following information is provided for your assistance.

  1. A parish is not a church building but a “definite community of the Christian Faithful established on a stable basis within a particular church (diocese)” (c. 515§1). The proposal, if accepted, will not change the location of the Mass in the Extraordinary Form but establish a parish separate and apart from Holy Wisdom Parish using the same facilities that are presently being used for Mass and Catechism.
  2. A quasi-parish is a definite community of the Christian Faithful entrusted to a priest as its proper pastor but due to particular circumstances has not been erected as a parish (c. 516). The proposal would establish the quasi-parish for the Extraordinary Form for a period of time during which an evaluation would be made to determine if it is opportune to grant the status of a parish to the quasi-parish. This evaluation would include, but not be limited to, the growth in registered parishioners, the financial stability of the quasi-parish and diocesan pastoral planning.
  3. The Diocesan Bishop will appoint a pastor for the quasi-parish. The pastor mayor may not be the priest assigned to celebrate the Mass in the Extraordinary Form but a priest who will be responsible for the spiritual and administrative care of the quasi-parish.
  4. Unlike the present situation in which Holy Wisdom Parish and the Latin Mass Community share in the expenses for the maintenance of the church and facilities and the salary of the Chaplain is paid by the Diocese, the quasi-parish will be fully financially responsible to support its mission. That is, it will be required to pay for the clergy, religious education, use of the facilities (church and school building), full parish share assessment, full catholic education assessment and general costs for administration. This will require an increase in contributions of the parishioners of the quasi-parish of approximately $200,000 over the next five years and necessarily involve increased expenses.
  5. If the quasi-parish is established, a parish pastoral and finance council will be established by the pastor, upon consultation with the chaplain, in accordance with the decree of the Diocesan Bishop. Members will be selected by the pastor, upon consultation with the Chaplain, and the councils are consultative in nature.

Thanking you in advance for your careful consideration of this proposal and praying for
the God’s blessing on you and your family, we remain

Yours in Christ,

[signed]
Very Reverend Lawrence A. DiNardo
Pastor of Holy Wisdom Parish

[signed]
Reverend James W. Dolan
Chaplain