Parishes grow only when people are welcomed, heard, pope says

By Cindy Wooden

Catholic News Service

ROME (CNS) — After months of study and discussion, the parishes of the Diocese of Rome have recognized “a general and healthy exhaustion” with doing the same things over and over, touching the lives of fewer and fewer people as time goes on, Pope Francis said.

Changing the way parishes — and their priests and involved laity — operate will not be easy, the pope said, but members of the diocese must set out to follow the Lord more closely, deal with the reality in their neighborhoods and learn how to show everyone living within the parish boundaries that they are recognized and loved.

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