Principles of clustering for a new Mass schedule by Father Jim Hewes

We have received a submission from Father Jim Hewes of the Diocese of Rochester. He has written a reflection on the process of parish clustering, a challenging topic to many parishes nationwide. His reflection includes a list of guidelines for this difficult process. We thank Father Hewes for providing his work to the NFPC and to the readers of This Week.

For the PDF of his work, click here.


Father Jim Hewes is a priest of the Diocese of Rochester. Ordained for over 43 years, Fr. Hewes has served in rural, suburban, and inner city parishes as well as serving as a campus minister and prison chaplain. He is a trained and certified mediator, and formerly served as director of Project Rachel for 18 years.


If you would like to submit an essay or article to This Week, we would be happy to publish it. Email [email protected] with any submissions or questions.

A New Year Begins by Fr. Dennis G. Lewandowski

Fr. Dennis Lewandowski

In this first newsletter of 2018, we have received an essay from Fr. Dennis Lewandowski of Naperville, Illinois. In it, he writes about New Year’s resolutions and planning. Click on the link below to view a PDF of his essay.

A New Year Begins – Father Dennis Lewandowski

Morning Homilies II By Pope Francis

Each morning Pope Francis says Mass and offers a short homily for fellow residents and guests in the chapel of St. Martha’s Guesthouse, where he has chosen to live. Through these accounts of his morning homilies, drawn from September 2013 to January 2014, it is now possible, for those who were not present, to experience and enjoy his lively manner of speaking, and his capacity to engage his listeners and their daily lives with the joy of the gospel message. As in the first volume, the homilies are marked by humor and memorable images. But even more important are the themes that arise again and again: the importance of mercy and forgiveness; the role of Jesus as Savior; the dangers of a church closed in on itself; and the gospel as an unfailing source of life and joy.

Same Call, Different Men: The Evolution of the Priesthood Since Vatican II

The latest in a series of NFPC-commissioned books that looks at attitudes, challenges and changes in the priesthood.  This longitudinal study was first begun in 1970 by the National Opinion Research Center. This new volume, based on a survey conducted by the Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate (CARA) at Georgetown University in 2009 surveyed 900 priests who shared their lives and ministry. The book looks at the demographic changes as well as challenges and satisfactions in priestly life. The fallout from the sexual abuse scandal is also detailed. The research concludes with a look to the future and who is encouraging the next generation of priests. (Liturgical Press, 2012)