Letter from Bishop Whalen/Welcome Msgr. Luke Sweeney!
Dear IHM Parishioners,
Thank you for your messages related to Father Thomas Lynch, one of our fine priests whose dedication has marked each of his many pastoral assignments. It is encouraging to hear of the ways in which he has worked with the parishioners of Immaculate Heart of Mary Parish to build a true Catholic community of faith. Father Lynch did not ask to leave your parish. I asked him to fill a need for the Archdiocese, and loyal priest that he is, he agreed though with a sadness at leaving IHM.
We diocesan priests are at the service of all God’s people in the Archdiocese. The needs of each parish are taken into account in the difficult decision of parish assignments. Sometimes the particular needs of a parish necessitate moving a pastor before the completion of the usual term. In this case, Father Lynch’s experience and expertise are needed in the complexity of the pastoral challenges faced by Holy Name-St. Gregory Parish. Recently, the Franciscan Friars made the decision that they can no longer staff the parish. That leave taking is, as you can well imagine, difficult for the parishioners there. Father Lynch has the pastoral sensitivity, skill, and good common sense to guide that parish in the same way he has guided your parish and Our Lady of Angels before that. In addition, Father Lynch has the linguistic ability which the parish needs as a multicultural and multi-lingual community.
Monsignor Luke Sweeney will be your new pastor.
He, too, is one of our finest priests who has served well in parishes, priestly formation, and most recently in the service of the Holy Father at Rome. I know he will find a welcoming parish family at Scarsdale.
This reminds all of us that we need to pray for vocations to the priesthood. We just do not have the number of priests we had in the past. Priests come from good Catholic families such as yours, and strong vibrant parishes such as Immaculate Heart of Mary. Please pray that many of the young people of the parish will hear God’s call to serve His Church as priests, sisters, religious brothers and deacons.
Thank you for your kind understanding of the practical realities we face as a Church. And please remember to pray for Father Lynch – his challenges are formidable!
Bishop Edmund J. Whalen
Vicar for Clergy
Msgr. Luke Sweeney
to read an article from Catholic New York entitled
"New York Priest Serving in Rome Named Monsignor"
from November 20, 2019.
on Tuesday, July 21 at 4:01PM