Transferrance Priests from One Parish to Another
Q: I just found a great Church and now our priest is leaving. How does a priest get transferred, who decides, what criteria is there?
A: The bishop decides where to allocate his priests based on a variety of factors, such as which parishes are largest and need the most priests, what kind of ministry the particular priest is suited to, and his age and health. Often younger priests are moved around a good bit but later in their careers are settled down in one parish, where they then remain rather than being constantly moved in their elderly years.
As disappointing as it can be when a favorite priest is transferred, it is actually a good thing that priests are not assigned to one parish for life. In Protestant churches, where pastor often stay for years and years or even for life (they may have even founded the church), the congregation becomes too marked by the individual pastor’s preferences and style. Personality cults can develop around long-time pastors, and people can be led to confuse their particular pastor with the essence of Christian belief and practice, never having been exposed to anything else.