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After Reorganization, A Look At The Future Of The Catholic Church In Connecticut

In the last 50 years, Sunday mass attendance in the Archdiocese of Hartford has declined 70 percent, and the number of active priests is down 65 percent. So it’s not a surprise that the Archdiocese is closing down and merging churches across the state -- from 212 to 127. This hour, we talk about the local mergers with priests and parishioners. 

Waterbury is hardest hit, with four churches closing. We talk to a priest from that city about what changing demographics mean for their parishes.

Also, we hear from one of the “Faithful 10” -- a group of parishioners from St Michael's and St Justin's in Hartford who met every week for a year in order to make a plan to consolidate their churches.

And we find out how this trend is reflected in the Catholic Church nationwide.


  • Father James Shanley - Vicar of Pastoral Planning for the Archdiocese of Hartford 
  • Kay Taylor Brooks - Part of the "Faithful 10" group of parishioners assigned to create a smooth transition for the merger of St Michael's and St. Justin's churches in Hartford 
  • Father Christopher Ford - Vicar of Waterbury Deanery, Rector at the Basilica of the Immaculate Conception in Waterbury 
  • Benjamin Peters - Associate Professor of Religious Studies and Theology at University of St. Joseph

Join the conversation on Facebook and Twitter.

Catie Talarski is Senior Director of Storytelling and Radio Programming at Connecticut Public.

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