Location of parishes


I have a good question. How does a diocese decide and/or determine where to build a Parish? Is it mostly becasue there are allready a lot of Catholics in that area but no Parish? Or do they just pick any random place to build a Parish?

And also, here in California would you all say that there are more Catholics than any other religion and/or other church denomination???



When I lived in Ohio, my parish was getting very large, about 5500 or 6000 families and most masses were standing room only. It was time for a new parish. They found a halfway point in the area and that's where the new parish went.

I don't know if it's done that way everywhere, but that's how it was done about 20 years ago back in Ohio. :)


about statistics in CA I have no idea but those are avaliable, ask the diocese, and there is a national group who compiles and reports those statistics for the bishops.

the decision on where to build a parish (or when to close an existing one) depends mainly on population, if there is a significant group of Catholics who is not being served, or conversely if there is no longer a significant Catholic population in a neighborhood to support a parish. Until a parish is self-supporting it may be run as a mission staffed by priests and lay volunteers from another parish, but the goal is usually to make it self supporting and have a permanent pastor and building as soon as possible.

Cost and availability of land is of course another factor, as is the availability of priests to staff new parishes.

Our new church (not new parish) will be built away from the center city, where it is close to the other two parishes, and in the exact geographical center of our boundaries, but will serve a huge population north and west of us who are now several miles away from the nearest church for Mass, CCD etc., and where there is rapid growth. This bishop and probably the new bishop will also be concerned with rapid growth in the northern part of the diocese and work on turning missions into parishes or establishing new parishes. Also many of the former colonias are now more stable growing communities and new parishes have been established, or missions have graduated to parishes, in those places.

this is true many places in Texas and I believe also CA, that where there is a siginificant minority population if new residents, such as Vietnamese, Filipino etc. the bishop may decided in consultation with that community that they need a parish where they can worship and be catechized in their own language and traditions and often invites priests from among that group to establish parishes to serve their needs.


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