Clergy crunch in Ottawa

Published November 1, 2001

A Port Sydney, Ont., teenager has been charged with setting a fire in July that destroyed Christ Church, the oldest The diocese of Ottawa is facing a crunch in the number of available priests, as a growing number of clergy plan to retire in the near future. Eight priests are due to reach the retirement age of 65 in the next five years, 14 in five to 10 years and 28 in 10 to 15 years.

By some estimates, as many as 80 or 85 priests are planning to leave parish ministry because of retirement or other reasons.

Bishop Peter Coffin said there is a need for more young men and women to come forward for ordination, and clergy stipends will increase by 3.6 per cent in 2002 in a further effort to make the priesthood more attractive in the diocese.

The diocesan executive committee also approved a 2.7 per cent increase in its transportation allowance and a 1.4 per cent increase in its housing allowance.


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