Harvey: The Establishment of Mary Help of Christians Parish

Harvey: New MHC Parish
MHC Parish: Harvey, LA (USA)
Promotional image for the new parish
Courtesy of Fr. Mark Hyde, SDB

By Fr. Mark Hyde, SDB

(Harvey, LA – June 5) – These past 18 months, the Archdiocesan Pastoral Planning Process for the Salesian Parishes of St. Rosalie and St. John Bosco culminated with the selection of St. Rosalie Church to be the worship site for the newly erected Parish of Mary Help of Christians at a Founders' Meeting held on Sunday afternoon, June 3, at Archbishop Shaw High School.

At the beginning of 2023, the Archdiocese did a vibrancy assessment of every parish in the Archdiocese, and parishes were asked how they could plan to be more vibrant. From the beginning, the vibrancy committees of both of our Salesian parishes were committed to working together as a team to prepare proposals for the Archdiocese to consider. The vibrancy committee engaged in a synodal process and presented our recommendations to the Archdiocese. The response of the Archdiocese was that our two parishes were to merge, choose a name for the new parish, and decide which parish church facility would best serve the needs of the Catholic population of Harvey/Marrero and the Westbank.

The people of the parish held nominations, a primary election, and a final election. They chose Mary Help of Christians as the titular and patroness of our new parish. The Archbishop and the Priests' Council affirmed our choice.

Then came the question of which campus would best serve the needs of our new parish. A “come and see” was arranged at each parish, input was constantly sought from the parishioners, and the vibrancy committee engaged in intense dialogue with the Archdiocese about the impact of the archdiocesan bankruptcy upon our choices.

After they had gathered and analyzed all this information, the vibrancy committee presented their recommendation to the founding members. Fr. Mark Hyde listened attentively to the interventions of the founding members. He then accepted the recommendation of the vibrancy committee as the road forward for our new parish.

May the Holy Spirit and our Blessed Lady continue to guide us in the establishment of this new parish. And may the Salesian Family accompany us in prayer during this new beginning.

June 5, 2024 - 2:00pm
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