Intentional Planning in Mansfield and Lexington

The Diocese of Toledo is engaged in an Intentional Planning process. The purpose of this process is to
ensure quality ministry throughout the diocese in light of current demographic data and to support the
health and holiness of priests. Over the next five years, this discernment process will occur in one form or
another in every community in the diocese.
The planning process is proactively facing the reality that the demographics of our parishes are rapidly
changing while the number of active priests is declining. From 2010 to 2019, the average parish in the
diocese lost over 21% of its Mass attendance. From 1981 to 2019, the average parish mass attendance
dropped about 45%, while, in the same period, the average priest only celebrated Mass for about 4% more
people on Sunday.

Here are the local statistics:

Mass Attendance20172018201920202021
St. Mary298306322226277
St. Peter1,130944900462609

The Toledo Diocese has lost three active priests in the last two years. This represents a 5% reduction in
diocesan priests available for parish ministry. The planning process’ goal is to assign our priests in the light
of the new realities in our communities and presbyterate. We are currently considering having one pastor
with two associate pastors working as a team to minister in the three parishes in Mansfield and Lexington.
While this would not reduce the total number of priests in the area, it would free a much-needed pastor for ministry in another part of the diocese.

We appreciate everyone who has already given feedback on this proposal by letter, email, or at meetings.
Please email [email protected] with any questions or comments.