Announcement Regarding St. Peter Cathedral Parish and School Finances
from the Most Rev. Lawrence T. Persico, Bishop of Erie
In March I spoke to you about the lien that had been placed against St. Peter Cathedral School.
Today, I am here as your bishop and your pastor, knowing my first commitment is to keep you, the parishioners and school parents, informed. Previously I told you I was engaging the firm of Schaffner, Knight, and Minnaugh to conduct a forensic audit of the school and parish.
After five months of investigation, the audit firm submitted a report on their findings. Having reviewed the report with the auditors and the diocesan attorney, it was clear to me that the findings needed to be turned over to the district attorney’s office. I have now taken this step.
As I have stated in the past, parishioners have a right to know what has transpired. Whether or not charges are filed, I will share more information with you in the future. I trust you understand I cannot go into further detail regarding this matter until the district attorney makes a decision about the appropriate legal actions to be taken.
I know many of you are deeply concerned about what the situation means to the future of our parish and school. We have been blessed by generous donors who have helped us take care of some of the immediate financial concerns. However, we still have a long road ahead.
I‘m sure you will be as surprised as I was to learn that the parish carries a half million dollars in debt.
Bishop Tobias Mullen built this cathedral one stone at a time, halting construction several times until he was able to raise enough funds to continue. We will take inspiration from his wise stewardship and ensure fiscal responsibility not only at St. Peter Cathedral but in all the parishes across our diocese. Our debt is large but it is not insurmountable.
Today our challenge is to recommit to all that this parish means to our community. Your help and support is absolutely necessary for the vitality of our parish, and will help your rector, Father Michael, and me to lay the foundation for a secure future.
Thank you for the kindness you have already shown as we have worked to sort out the situation. I ask you, as parishioners, for continued support, prayers and patience until this matter is resolved.
Copyright 2013 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.