Clergy changes affect a number of parishes in the Diocese of Harrisburg

Conversation in a number of parishes in the Diocese of Harrisburg this weekend focused on the changes recently announced by Rev. Ronald W. Gainer.

By a press release, the bishop works with a staff committee to make assignment decisions for the clergy of the diocese “for the purpose of meeting the needs of our parishes and fulfilling the mission of the Church”.

These assignments normally take place in June but have been delayed this year due to the pandemic.

Priests are selected for missions based on a variety of factors, including local needs, skills and experience, availability and health, the statement said. In several cases, steps have been taken to fill the places of priests who are retiring.

The following clergy changes will take effect on October 26:

  • Reverend Darius GC Moss – currently pastor of Queen of Peace Parish, Millersburg, is retiring.
  • Reverend Paul CB Schenck – currently Director of the Deacon Training Office and Parish Vicar at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Parish, Mechanicsburg. He obtained permission to be posted outside the diocese.
  • the Very Reverend Francis J. Tamburro – currently Pastor of the Immaculate Conception of the parish of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Berwick, is retiring.
  • Reverend Steven J. Arena – currently Parish Vicar at Saint John Neumann Parish, Lancaster and Chaplain at Lancaster Catholic High School. He has been appointed campus minister at Millersville University and Franklin and Marshall College and will remain chaplain at Lancaster Catholic High School in Lancaster.
  • Reverend Dominic Azagbor, OP – currently administrator at Sacred Heart of Jesus Parish, Spring Grove. He was appointed pastor of the parish of St. Rose in Lima, York.
  • Reverend John B. Bateman Jr. – currently administrator of the parish of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Lancaster. He has been appointed pastor of Saint Patrick Parish, York and director of the office of deacon training.
  • Reverend Keith M. Carroll – currently pastor of Saint Patrick Parish, York. He was appointed pastor of the Immaculate Conception of the parish of the Blessed Virgin Mary in New Oxford.
  • Reverend Joshua R. Cavender – currently campus minister at Millersville University and Franklin and Marshall College. He has been appointed Parish Vicar at Saint John the Baptist Parish, New Freedom and Campus Minister at York College, York.
  • the Rev. Samuel I. Dubois – currently parish vicar at the parish of Sainte-Thérèse de l’Enfant-Jésus, New Cumberland. He has been appointed parish vicar at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Parish, Mechanicsburg.
  • Reverend Benjamin J. Dunkelberger – currently Parish Vicar at Saint John the Baptist Parish, New Freedom and Campus Minister at York College, York. He was appointed pastor of Our Lady of the Visitation parish, Shippensburg and campus minister at the University of Shippensburg, Shippensburg.
  • Reverend Joseph R. Howard – currently parish priest of the Basilica of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, Hanover. He was appointed pastor of Saint-Joseph parish in Lancaster.
  • Reverend Matthew R. Larlick – currently pastor of Saint-Joseph parish, Berwick. He was appointed pastor of the Immaculate Conception of the parish of the Blessed Virgin Mother, Berwick. Father Larlick remains parish priest of Saint-Joseph parish in Berwick.
  • Reverend Michael C. Letterer – currently pastor of the Immaculate Conception of the parish of the Blessed Virgin Mary, New Oxford. He was appointed pastor of the parish of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, Spring Grove.
  • Reverend Samuel E. Miller – currently parish vicar at the Church of the Good Shepherd, Camp Hill. He was appointed parish vicar of Saint Joseph parish in Hanover and chaplain of Delone Catholic High School in McSherrystown.
  • Reverend Matthew C. Morelli – currently parish vicar at Saint-Joseph parish, Hanover and chaplain at Delone Catholic High School, McSherrystown. He was appointed parish priest of Saint Anthony of Padua, Lancaster.
  • Reverend Daniel P. O’Brien – currently parish priest of Saint Anthony of Padua, Lancaster. He obtained permission for medical leave.
  • Reverend Brian T. Olkowski – currently parish vicar of the parish of Saint-Joseph, Lancaster. He was appointed pastor of the Assumption of the parish of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Lancaster.
  • Reverend Michael Opoki, AJ – currently parish priest of Notre-Dame Auxiliatrice, Lykens. He was appointed Pastor of Queen of Peace Parish in Millersburg and will remain Pastor of Our Lady Help of Christians Parish in Lykens.
  • the Very Reverend Luis R. Rodriguez – currently pastor of Corpus Christi parish, Chambersburg. He was appointed pastor of the parish of San Juan Bautista, Lancaster.
  • Reverend Dwight D. Schlaline – currently pastor of Our Lady of the Visitation parish, Shippensburg and campus minister at the University of Shippensburg. He was appointed parish priest of the Basilica of the Sacred Heart of Jesus in Hanover.
  • Reverend Allan F. Wolfe – currently pastor of the parish of San Juan Bautista, Lancaster and pastor of the parish of Saint Joseph, Lancaster. He was appointed pastor of the Corpus Christi parish of Chambersburg and of the Our Lady of Refuge mission in Doylesburg.

Meanwhile, the diocese continues to work in bankruptcy, which was announced in February 2020. Bankruptcy court set 11:59 p.m. on November 13 as the deadline for filing any claim against the diocese.

About two dozen dioceses or archdioceses in the United States – including Portland, Oregon; San Diego; and St. Paul-Minneapolis – have sought such protection from sexual abuse lawsuits since the early 2000s. The latest was the Diocese of Rockville Center, which serves approximately 1.4 million Catholics and a large portion from Long Island. This bankruptcy was announced Thursday.

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