Closing Churches

Did you know that in July of this year more than 20 parishes in our diocese will cease having Sunday Mass? Maybe one of these parishes is your own.

The cessation of Sunday Mass will be one of the hardest events for faithful Catholics to process. It feels like the death of a loved one.

However, this is not the first time God’s people have had to deal with their worship in a particular place coming to an end. I’d like to offer lessons from the past. Why is this happening and what should our response be?


Vatican on Pastoral Planning 

Continue the Conversation

Get EquipCast in your podcast app

Jim Jansen – Director of Pastoral Services, Archdiocese of Omaha

5 Responses to “Closing Churches”

Thank you for educating the readers and listeners about reality of the churches, as they change yesterday, today and tomorrow. Bless parishioners and their families, who are indeed our missionary disciplines. Bless you and other leaders, also our missionary disciplines, on your complex challenges to retain, flourish and grow your churches – now and in the near future! ♥

With all due respect, your explanation as to why churches are closing and have few vocations falls flat when you consider, 50 miles away in Lincoln, there are vocations and while they are not without problems, they are bearing much fruit, with the same challenges. Has anyine asked why? One church in our archdiocese, Immaculate Conception, has more vocations than every other church in the archdiocese combined. Has anyone asked why?
Our biggest churches have literally a few catechumens, sometimes none, at the Easter vigil, no fruit. Why?
We have non Catholics, some times pro choice or LGBT teaching and forming our students.
The answers to why couldnt be more clear.
When we fail to evangelize the uncompromised person of Jesus Christ and His true church, we die in our faith, people leave the church, it becomes less Catholic and more secular, we lose vocations, and our churches close- naturally. This is what scripture reveals and is painfully obvious.
I grew up at Omaha Holy Family parish where they removed kneelers and statues, holy water fonts, devotions, unleavened bread, the creed, moved the tabernacle to the sacristy, taught false political ideals over gospel ideals, much more. Unsurprisingly their parish numbers dwindled over the years as they mostly aged out and died. No one was surprised to see them close.
Thanks for all of your faith and work in the archdiocese, to build up the kingdom.
God bless,
David Zebolsky

Thanks for your comments David. I lived and worked in Lincoln as a missionary for almost 20 years. I appreciate your questions and I think we should ask those questions and look deep for answers. For my part, I am convinced that clinging to the person of Jesus and the teachings of the Church and our recent popes will see us through the tough times and to greater fruitfulness. The Lord has more in store for us.

Short but very good. The message is so important. You do such a great job with these equip-casts. Thank you.

My name is Joe Bober I’m the State Athletics Chairman/Special Events Coordinator for the Knights of Columbus Would you please send me a list of the parishes that are closing so I can plan accordingly. I live in Omaha, and I’m retired, so if I can ever be of any help to you, please call on me.

Leave a Reply