Bill Granting Control of Parishes to Laity

Susan Brinkmann, OCDS

National outrage has caused the proponents of a bill granting lay people financial control of Catholic parishes in Connecticut to withdraw the draft legislation citing constitutional difficulties.

The bill would have replaced an existing law that defines Catholic churches and congregations as nonprofit corporations operated by a five-member board of three clergy and two laypeople. Instead, the measure called for boards to be made up of seven to 13 laypeople elected by parishioners. It said the pastor would not be a member of the board and the bishop would serve as an ex officio nonvoting member.
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