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Ordained and Lay Ecclesial Ministry

Supports personnel needs and special issues related to diocesan priests, deacons and lay ecclesial ministers.

Ordained and Lay Ecclesial Ministry serves the personnel needs and address any special issues related to diocesan priests, deacons and lay ecclesial ministers.

The department includes the:

  • Vicar for Ordained and Lay Ecclesial Ministry
  • Personnel and Placement Office
  • Priest Placement Board
  • Minister to Priests
  • Services for Senior Priests
  • Deacon Services
  • Continuing Formation of Clergy

The vicar and the director oversee the work of the department in providing personnel services for the priests, deacons and lay ecclesial ministers of the Archdiocese of Milwaukee. Some of these responsibilities include administering policies pertaining to assignment of priests, deacons and lay ecclesial ministers, wellness issues, coordinating the New Pastors Program, coordinating the mentoring program for newly ordained priests and parish directors and providing access to a variety of retreats and continuing formation opportunities for priests and deacons.

The Services for Senior Priests’ Office helps priests adjust to retirement by assisting them with housing, health care or other concerns to them or their families.

2017 Spring Assembly of Priests

“Led by the Spirit – Spirituality of Ministerial Priesthood”

May 8, 9, 10 at the Osthoff Resort in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin.

Frequently Asked Questions

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  We like our pastor and we want to keep him. Why does he have to move?

It is easy for any leader to "fall into a rut" if he stays too long in one leadership position. Change in leadership is a means of injecting a new challenge into a priest's life and new creativity into a parish.

Among all of the parishes in the Archdiocese of Milwaukee, there are great differences in responsibilities and expectations of the priest. A system of rotation of the priests allows all priests to share in the greater or lesser workloads of the various parishes.

Because a certain amount of appraisal is involved in the re-appointment process, a system of rotation ensures that the priests will evaluate their performance.

  What are the reasons for a Term of Office policy for priests?

Some priests, even when they know they ought to move on, find it difficult to ask for a transfer. A routine Term of Office policy makes it easier for such priests.

With a declining number of priests, it is possible for priests and people alike to "dig in" and keep their status quo at the expense of other parishes with equal or greater pastoral needs. A routine system of rotation ensures that there will be priests available for parish merger situations and shared pastor situations.

The policy makes it easier for the Archbishop to deal with problematic transfers and at the same time it is a face-saving method for both the bishop and the pastor.

  Why are some priests exempt from the term of office policy?

In the old code of Canon Law, a pastor was appointed for life to a parish. When the Archdiocese of Milwaukee adopted the Term of Office policy in 1980, any pastor who had already been appointed could stay in his parish for life. If a pastor chose to move to another assignment, then he became subject to the new Term of Office policy. There are still 9 priests who are "grandfathered" under this old law. Like any priest, they may retire at age 68. But at 75, they must submit their letter of retirement to the Archbishop. Some of these men are scheduled to retire soon; others have up to 5 years before the mandatory age of 75 for retirement.

Secondly, there are four reasons why a pastor might receive an extension beyond his two terms of office (six years each). They are outlined in the Clergy Manual. They are: 1) the needs of the parish in light of other staff changes; 2) the priest is within one or two years of retirement; 3) special or major events or projects in the parish; and 4) needs of the collaborative projects and models in the Archdiocese.

Vicar for Ordained and Lay Ecclesial Ministry

Very Rev. James Lobacz
Vicar for Clergy
414-769-3490
lobaczj@archmil.org

Sr. Kathleen Schweihs, CSA
Administrative Assistant
414-769-3484
schweihsk@archmil.org

Minister to Priests

Rev. Martin Pable, OFM Cap
St. Francis Friary
327 W. Brown St.
Milwaukee, WI 53212
414-336-8783
mpable@thecapuchins.org

Personnel and Placement Office

Rick Tank
Director of Priest and Lay Ecclesial Personnel and Placement
414-769-3458
tankr@archmil.org

RoseAnn Gnadt
Administrative Secretary
gnadtr@archmil.org
414-769-3459

Priest Placement Board

Rick Tank
Facilitator
414-769-3458
tankr@archmil.org

Services for Senior Priests

Very Rev. James Lobacz
Vicar For Senior Priests
414-769-3496
lobaczj@archmil.org

Deacon Services

Deacon Michael Chmielewski
Associate Director of Deacon Services
414-769-3409
chmielewskim@archmil.org

Continuing Formation of Clergy

Deacon Alfred Lázaga
Coordinator
Phone: 414-769-3489
Fax: 414-769-3408
lazagaa@archmil.org

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The Archdiocese of Milwaukee

3501 South Lake Drive
PO Box 070912
Milwaukee, WI 53207-0912

Phone:  (414) 769-3300
Toll-Free: (800) 769-9373
Fax:  (414)  769-3408