Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Wichita line men

Back in July, the St. Al's bulletin and Franklin's suburban weekly ran ads from our Archdiocese of Milwaukee on Catholic schools. Both referenced the Catholic Schools Strategic Education Plan. More interesting than what the Plan proposes is what it does not (p. 19).
The Wichita model

The Catholic school system in the Diocese of Wichita offers the children of active Catholic parishioners a tuition-free grade school and high school education. “In the stewardship way of life, Catholic schools are parochial; they are funded by the entire parish,” the diocese declared. “They are not private schools that are owned and operated by those who use them. Therefore, every parish family is encouraged to contribute eight percent of their income to the parish.” This model, and similar funding models used in Lutheran schools, merit further exploration.

We likewise hear of smaller dioceses that are ordaining many more men to the priesthood. What we do not hear is why the Archdiocese of Milwaukee is not already at work to adopt or adapt what these other dioceses are doing.


  1. Offhand, I'd guess that the reason has to do with the word "fraud" being bandied about in courtrooms.

  2. Dad29:

    That wouldn't explain why our Archdiocese leaves us guessing. If that or something else is a reason why good things we hear are happening in another diocese cannot be replicated here, they could say so. My guess is that avoiding the challenge of attempting what these other dioceses accomplish comes from the "corporate culture" of our Archdiocese, and so does the lack of explanation.

  3. There's also momentum.

    R. Weakland did NOT like parochial schools. Perhaps his successor does not want to reverse THAT decision, either--just like he doesn't want to repair the Cathedral, etc., etc.

  4. Archbishop Weakland, though, did eventually and explicitly change his opinion on parish schools. There do seem to be a lot of other people who think that closing a parish school will transfer all that money and effort to the rest of the parish operation. This might be the Hamelin Model, as opposed to the Wichita Model.

    Archbishop Dolan is pretty enthusiastic about Catholic schools. At the same time, he seems to be centralizing operations, while the Wichita Model is parochial.

    As for the "renovated" Cathedral, even if Archbishop Dolan picked a lot more battles, that one probably wouldn't be a priority.

  5. If he's centralizing, it's a return to the pre-Rembert model.

    Not all bad; the religious-education component could actually become uniformly Catholic.