Jesuits remain committed to serving downtown Buffalo
In March of this year, the Very Reverend Joseph M. O’Keefe, SJ, provincial superior of the USA East Province of the Society of Jesus, and Bishop Michael W. Fisher spoke together to consider the plans for the Jesuit Community in Buffalo in light of the current restructuring of the diocese and the Jesuits’ continued desire to serve the church of Buffalo.
Father O’Keefe agreed, in accordance with the pastoral protocols laid out in the Road to Renewal, that St. Michael’s – as it is and always has been a church of the diocese – will become a member of the newly forming Downtown Family of Parishes which, in addition to St. Michael’s includes St. Joseph Cathedral, St. Louis, Blessed Sacrament, St. Anthony’s, and Our Lady of Perpetual Help. The Jesuits will continue to provide sacramental ministry at St. Michael’s in cooperation with the Family to the extent that they are able. At the same time, the Jesuits will expand their ministerial service to the diocese and its people at Christ the King Chapel on the Canisius College campus. The Jesuits currently residing at St. Michael’s rectory will relocate either to Loyola Hall, the Jesuit residence on the campus, or to other works and locations within the USA East Province where they can continue to serve the Church. The changes are expected to take effect this summer.
The Society of Jesus remains committed to the people of Buffalo and the diocese, while both the Jesuits and the diocese continue to explore how they may continue their missions with depleted resources.
Bishop Fisher expressed his gratitude to the Jesuit Community.
“I am aware that the Jesuits in the East Province of the United States are undergoing their own discernment to consider their commitments to their numerous apostolic works. I am most grateful that the Jesuits will continue their presence and ministry in our diocese,” Bishop Fisher said.
St. Michael’s will continue to be an integral part of the vibrant downtown family of parishes. As the Downtown Family begins, we will soon witness the coordination of Masses, sacraments, ministry, and outreach programs among the family member parishes.