Parish roundup: Plight of parish schools; Salvadoran immigrant integral to her parish

This article appears in the The Field Hospital feature series. View the full series.

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A bound Codex Vaticanus manuscript from the 13th century is seen inside the "Vatican Museums and Vatican Library" exhibit at the Museum of the Bible in Washington. RCIA programs could benefit from greater emphasis on Bible study, according to an article on mentioned in this Parish roundup. (CNS/Tyler Orsburn)

Fox News commentator Fr. Jonathan Morris, who is also pastor of Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church in the Bronx, New York, established a committee to aid families of a Dec. 28 fire in his neighborhood that killed 13 people in an apartment building, with three more in critical condition. It was the largest number of deaths in New York City by fire since 9/11. His parish includes a GoFundMe page on its website that, by Jan. 12, had raised more than $275,000. Morris thanked contributors to the fund in an appearance on "Fox and Friends" Jan. 11.

A Catholic parish school in Chicago is in danger of closing. It's the same story repeated regularly: low enrollment, rising costs and the inability of a parish standing alone to support a school. A similar story affects a Cincinnati parish school that has been open for 149 years.

What used to be considered innocent no longer is. A priest in Kansas is removed from a parish after taking boys on a hiking trip last fall. No abusive behavior was reported, but the priest violated Wichita Diocese policies prohibiting such trips (being alone with minors). He will be reassigned.

A young Salvadoran immigrant plays a vital role in her parish in the Baltimore Archdiocese.

Suggestions on improving the RCIA process can be found here.

Read about what it's like for a Mexican family to find sanctuary in an African American church

[Peter Feuerherd is a correspondent for NCR's Field Hospital series on parish life and is a professor of journalism at St. John's University, New York.]

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