The story I reported here a few days ago has been reported in the Tablet (30th December), with some additional commentary from one of the local priests. Read it and weep.
Fr Paul Hardy said Sr Yvonne Pilarski, whose official title is “pastoral administrator” of Christ the King Church in Milton Keynes, had been universally accepted by the people.
“I’ve seen the congregation treating her exactly as if she was their parish priest,” he said. “They’ve taken it very well – she is obviously their resident person and that’s how she’s treated. If she wants something to happen, it happens.”
Sr Yvonne, who also administers the parish of St Bede’s in Newport Pagnall, does all the administration work connected with her parishes, as well as any pastoral care that does not require a priest, such as taking Communion to the sick or visiting the elderly. “She is very much the boss,” said Fr Hardy. “She’s a very good parish priest – she has that feminine quality that parish priests don’t have.”
Fr Hardy said he thought Bishop Peter Doyle of Northampton, who appointed Sr Yvonne to her new role in the autumn, had been very courageous, adding: “We can’t replace priests who die or retire any more, and this is a way forward.”
'She is a very good parish priest'. Yup, 'this is a way forward', said the lemming to the lamppost...
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