Saturday, May 10, 2014

The Archbishop is sending me to Russia

When I was appointed to Holy Cross-Immaculata by Archbishop Schnurr, my appointment was as “administrator,” meaning that it might be long or short.

This week, I found out that it will be short. The Archbishop has asked me to become pastor of Saint Remy Parish in Russia. That's the Village of Russia, in Shelby County, west of Sidney. A lot of folks don't realize that's in the Archdiocese, but I do. I spent a number of years in the northern part of the diocese, where folks will tell you, that's the real archdiocese.

I will take this new assignment July 1.

The priest who will come to Holy Cross-Immaculata is Father Jeff Bacon, who will also have duties at the Archdiocese offices downtown. He will be named pastor, which means the Archbishop intends him to stay for awhile.

When Bishop Binzer – who oversees these matters – asked my preference, I told him I’d rather stay here; but if that wasn’t possible, I’d be happy to go to Saint Remy. I was familiar both with the parish and their outgoing pastor from my many years in the northern part of the diocese, and I’ll be honored to follow such a fine priest.

But I will be sad to leave here, and not because of the view, but because of the lovely community here who has been nothing but kind and helpful to me.


ndspinelli said...

I reckon being a parish priest is somewhat like being a baseball player. You can get traded. At least you have some time to pack your bags. A ballplayer packs his gear and leaves that day. Russia got a good deal. Easy on the vodka! Good luck.

Angelika said...


rcg said...

You mean "Roosha"? Nice area, actually.

Trooper York said...

I don't understand why they feel that they have to move a pastor every few years. Just when a priest gets to know the people and the community it is time for him to move. In Brooklyn it is no more than 12 years. I have gone through many transitions and nothing is worse then when you go from a great loving pastor to someone who might try hard but just is not a good fit.

I remember when I was in St. Agnes twenty years ago and they changed pastors. They went from a very warm and personable pastor to an ex-Army chaplain who didn't get it. When he met with the ladies who basically ran the parish he just barked out orders and told them it was his way or the highway. They gently explained that this was the way it was done for the past fifty years. He didn't care. So they all quit.

He lasted another month.

It was all so unnecessary.

Trooper York said...

Good luck on your new posting.

I am sure you will be a wonderful shepherd to your flock.

Shouting Thomas said...

Good luck on your new assignment, Fr. Fox.

Hope you continue to with your weblog.

These moves can be very tough. My Filipino priest friend loved his congregation in NJ and they loved him. His bishop called him back to Manila.

I went out to dinner with him when he was in despair and considering resigning. He thought better of it after a few days. Leavings his friends was very painful.

People often do not understand that priests are just men who go through all the struggles that every man experiences.

ndspinelli said...

I always thought they move priests so they don't become too powerful. The hierarchy in the Catholic Church comes first.

Deacon David Oatney said...

Father Martin, I know that you know that reassignment can be and is a part of priestly life...and it is not easy.

But I pray for you, and for all priests. We need you, and when things such as this transfer must happen, I am thankful that you answered God's call. Never be afraid to tell us how we can pray for you.

Fr Martin Fox said...


Thanks for the good words!

But I'll be fine. I knew a year ago that I was very likely to relocate this year, so this is no surprise.

And of all the places I might have gone, this is an outstanding choice.

Marc said...

I hope St Remy and Russia are good to you, Father. Being attached to the vetus ordo, and a regular reader of its more prudent champions online, I must admit that the phrase exilium ad Russiae desertum occurred to me. I do see that they, the happy Russians, have already both the new and the old Latin Mass, if am reading the schedule right. (Was received into the Church at St Mary's in Oxford, almost 40 years ago.) Many thanks for your blog, and all your good work!