St. James Catholic Congregation's pastor, the Rev. Paul Stanosz, said the 2,000-member parish is selling the 42-year-old church building - and 23 acres it sits on - so the congregation can move into a larger facility that includes a community center.
Larger? Mass attendance was 681/2,270 (30%) in 2005 and 688/1,954 (35%) in 2006. That's the total at three masses in a church that seats 750.
"We're just relocating," Stanosz said. "It's just part of our growth: Franklin and Oak Creek are the fast-growing communities in Milwaukee County."
They are fast-growing communities, but despite that you'll notice reported parish membership declined. There is a lot of commercial development around the current facility, so it likely would bring a good price if sold, and the parish's tentative plan is to buy a smaller site at a new location. Even so,
Kraemer [Paul Kraemer, chairman of the parish's long-term planning committee] cautioned the sale of land might not be enough to finance new parish buildings.
From what I've heard in connection with parish building projects, they're probably working under the Field of Dreams theory of evangelization.