Petersburg Parishes to merge into single church


WAPAKONETA — Four Auglaize and Shelby County Catholic parishes are merging in July.

The Petersburg Parishes, which include Immaculate Conception and St. Lawrence churches in Botkins, St. Joseph Church in Wapakoneta and St. John Church in Fryburg, will merge to become the Holy Face of Jesus Parish on July 1.

All four churches, which have worked together for 10 years, will retain their names and remain open once the merger is complete.

Archbishop Dennis Schnurr and Chancellor Jason Williams signed a decree March 19 formalizing the merger, citing an insufficient number of priests available in the Archdiocese of Cincinnati and declining attendance as factors in their decision.

The Rev. Sean Wilson will serve as pastor of the parish.

“Over the past few years, our incredible parishioners have worked together as members of the Body of Christ,” Wilson said in a news release. “The Lord has guided this journey towards unity. We are so grateful for so many men and women who have shared their time, talent and energy. We look forward to the ways which God will continue to guide us.”

Schnurr will visit the parish at 4:30 p.m. on June 29 at St. Joseph Church, 101 W. Pearl St., Wapakoneta, to celebrate the merger. Festivities will follow Mass in the Parish Life Center connected to the church, concluding at 8 p.m.

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