Greetings and Blessings East Buffalo Family of Parishes,
I would not be at all surprised if this note fills you with bittersweet emotions. On one hand, I recognize a sense of loss you might be feeling as we move into a family of parishes model. We have long been accustomed to each parish having their own pastor who lives in the rectory next to the church. Yet as the number of priests continue to decline, we can, and must, look at the positive. The Diocese of Buffalo has developed a plan to have a team of priests’ minister within a family of parishes to keep as many worship sites open as possible. Our family is blessed to be assisted by the pastor of Corpus Christi Church, Rev. Mariusz Dymek, OSPPE and Rev. Mark Kreis, OSPPE, PhD. who has been assigned as our family senior parochial vicar.
Things have been very busy as I have been wrapping everything up at St. Peter’s in Lewiston & Youngstown, transiting to East Buffalo where I have begun to meet staff and many of you, and moving into the convent at St. Stanislaus. With the conclusion of the academic year at St. Peter’s School, I had long planned to take what has become a much-needed break. I know this may seem to make the transition more difficult, yet I would be doing you a disservice by not having taken the time to recharge before jumping into something new. In the meantime, my philosophy has long been to take one day at a time. To bring the most stability to our family I was adamant in keeping the July Mass schedule the same until we can plot a way forward together. My official start date will be on the 8th of July, and while I do plan to rotate to various parishes, my office will be at St. Katharine Drexel.
Please know that I consider it a tremendous joy to have been assigned to the East Buffalo Family of Parishes. If you need to contact me, please call your parish office and Barb, Noreen, Peggy, or Cathy will relay the message. You can also email me at email@example.com.
As we slowly move into a family of parishes, different priests from those you have been used to may be presiding at Masses, so let us support each other as a parish community, and stay focused on our Lord who nourishes us in the Blessed Sacrament. Amidst the changes we will have to face, Christ is our stability. Christ has been and will always be the same yesterday, today, and forever!
In Christ’s Peace,
Rev. Cole Webster