New structure, leadership set for diocesan deaneries


Bishop Joseph A. Galante has appointed new deans as part of a revised deanery reconfiguration for the Diocese of Camden.

Deaneries provide a structure for bringing together parishes to coordinate church activity within a region, including collaborating with shared ministry leaders. The nine new deaneries encompass the diocese’s 70 parishes and two missions in six counties of South Jersey.

Forged via collaboration with the Pastoral Planning Office, Office of the Vicar General, Office of the Chancellor, the Episcopal Council, and the Presbyteral Council, the new deanery configuration brings together the diocese’s ethnic and socioeconomic diversity. The deaneries will assist pastoral leaders in implementing responses to six pastoral priorities of the diocese: compassionate outreach, liturgy, lifelong formation, youth and young adults, lay ministry, and priestly vocations.

The new deaneries and deans are:

Deanery 1

Dean: Rev. Joseph T. Szolack, Infant Jesus Parish, Woodbury Heights

Parishes: Parish of the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, Camden; St. Josephine Bakhita, Camden; St. Joseph (Polish), Camden; Sacred Heart, Camden; Immaculate Heart of Mary/Transfiguration, West Collingswood (which will merge to become Most Precious Blood); Blessed Teresa of Calcutta, Collingswood; St. Aloysius/St. Vincent Pallotti, Haddon Township (which will merge to become St. Andre Bessette); Emmaus Catholic Community, Mt. Ephraim; St. Mary, Gloucester City; Annunciation/St. Maurice/St. Anne, Bellmawr (which will merge to become St. Joachim); Holy Angels, Woodbury; Infant Jesus, Woodbury Heights.

With 18,507 registered households and 12 parishes, and one of the Korean Catholic missions, Deanery 1 has its northernmost point in the Cathedral parish, and continues east in Camden County as far as Westmont and Haddon Heights, and continues south into Gloucester County, as far as Woodbury Heights. With a large amount of diversity, both socioeconomically and ethnically/racially, with large Hispanic and African-American populations, Deanery 1 aligns the poorest urban parishes with wealthier suburban parishes.

Deanery 2

Dean: Rev. Thomas A. Newton, Catholic Community of Christ Our Light, Cherry Hill

Parishes: St. Joseph Pro-Cathedral, Camden; St. Anthony of Padua, Camden; Mary, Queen of All Saints, Pennsauken; St. Peter, Merchantville; St. Stephen, Pennsauken; Catholic Community of Christ Our Light, Cherry Hill; Christ the King, Haddonfield; Holy Eucharist, Cherry Hill; St. Mary, Cherry Hill; St. Thomas More, Cherry Hill.

With 16,915 registered households and 10 parishes, Deanery 2, like Deanery 1, aligns the poorest urban areas with wealthy suburban areas, creating a large amount of socioeconomic and ethnic/racial diversity. Mostly urban in the west, the deanery becomes more suburban in the east. As with Deanery 1, there is a large Hispanic and African-American population in Deanery 2.

Deanery 3

Dean: Rev. Raymond P. Gormley, Holy Child Parish, Runnemede

Parishes: St. Rose of Lima, Haddon Heights; St. Rita, Bellmawr, Holy Child, Runnemede; Our Lady of Guadalupe, Lindenwold; St. Andrew the Apostle, Gibbsboro; St. Simon Stock, Berlin; and Mater Ecclesiae Mission, Berlin

Comprised entirely of parishes in central Camden County, mostly along the Rt. 30 corridor, but extending northeast to the Burlington County line, Deanery 3 has 19,577 registered households with six parishes and one mission. Representing a socioeconomically diverse population, which ranges from urban/dense suburban areas to rural areas, Deanery 3 includes a significant Hispanic population.

Deanery 4

Dean: Rev. Robert E. Hughes, Holy Family Parish, Sewell

Parishes: Our Lady of Hope, Blackwood; Holy Family, Sewell; Our Lady of Lourdes/Our Lady Queen of Peace, Glassboro (which will merge to become Mary, Mother of Mercy); Saints Peter and Paul, Turnersville; St. Charles Borromeo, Sicklerville; St. Bridget, Glassboro; St. Michael the Archangel, Franklinville

With 19,044 registered households and seven parishes, the socioeconomically diverse deanery includes a growing Hispanic population and a growing university. Deanery 4 ranges from densely populated suburban areas to rural areas.

Deanery 5

Dean: Rev. Anthony R. DiBardino, Catholic Community of the Holy Spirit, Mullica Hill

Parishes: St. Clare of Assisi, Gibbstown; Catholic Community of the Holy Spirit, Mullica Hill; St. Gabriel the Archangel, Carneys Point; Incarnation, Mantua

With 10,569 registered households and four parishes, there is a large diversity represented, with denser populations along the 130/295 corridor extending from Paulsboro to Salem City, and less dense populations east into rural Salem County. At least two communities in this area have significant Hispanic populations.

Deanery 6

Dean: Rev. Cadmus D. Mazzarella, Our Lady of Peace Parish, Williamstown

Parishes: Christ the Redeemer, Atco; Our Lady of Peace, Williamstown; Our Lady of the Lakes, Collings Lakes; St. Mary of Mt. Carmel, Hammonton

With four parishes and 12,274 households, the deanery covers northeastern Gloucester County, eastern Camden County, and western Atlantic County. Suburban and rural, Deanery 6 includes a larger-than-average African-American population in the Sicklerville and Williamstown areas, with Hispanics and Asians expected to be the fastest growing ethnic groups.

Deanery 7

Dean: Rev. Msgr. Victor S. Muro, Divine Mercy Parish, Vineland

Parishes: Queen of Angels/St. Rose of Lima/St. Mary, Newfield (which will merge to become Our Lady of the Blessed Sacrament); St. Padre Pio, Vineland; Divine Mercy, Vineland; Sacred Heart/St. Isidore, Vineland; Holy Cross, Bridgeton; All Saints, Millville

With six parishes and 11,519 registered households, Deanery 7 covers a large area, including most of Cumberland County and parts of Atlantic and Gloucester Counties. There is a sizeable Hispanic population in the Vineland and Bridgeton areas, as well as a substantial African-American population in the Bridgeton area. Deanery 7 has three urban areas, as well as suburban and rural areas, and a socioeconomic diversity much like Deaneries 1 and 2.

Deanery 8

Dean: Rev. Joseph A. Perreault, St. Joseph Parish, Sea Isle City

Parishes: Our Lady Star of the Sea, Cape May; St. John Neumann, North Cape May; Notre Dame de la Mer, Wildwood; Our Lady of the Angels, Cape May Court House; St. Brendan the Navigator, Avalon; St. Joseph, Sea Isle City; Resurrection/St. Casimir, Marmora (which will merge to become St. Maximillan Kolbe); St. Augustine/St. Frances Cabrini/Our Lady of Good Counsel, Ocean City (which will merge to become St. Damien).

Deanery 8, with eight parishes and 13,720 registered households, includes the shore parishes and mainland parishes of Cape May County. Some areas are urban in nature, while others are in rural areas. A diversity of wealth, a changing population from summer to winter months, a growing Hispanic community, and a large senior population also characterize this deanery.

Deanery 9

Dean: Rev. John J. Vignone, St. Katharine Drexel, Egg Harbor City

Parishes: Our Lady Star of the Sea, St. Michael, and St. Monica, Atlantic City; Holy Trinity, Margate; St. Nicholas of Tolentine, Atlantic City; St. Thomas, Brigantine; St. Vincent de Paul, Mays Landing; St. Katharine Drexel, Egg Harbor City; St. Joseph, Somers Point; Our Lady of Sorrows, Linwood; St. Gianna Beretta Molla, Northfield; St. Elizabeth Ann Seton, Absecon; Assumption/St. Nicholas, Galloway (which will merge to become Our Lady of Perpetual Help).

Covering most of Atlantic County, Deanery 9 includes 19,381 registered households, 13 parishes, and one of the Korean missions. Pairing parishes in poor urban areas with wealthier parishes, the deanery’s population is diverse, ranging from urban to rural, poor to wealthy, and includes Hispanics, Asians and African-Americans. It is the most linguistically diverse deanery, with Mass being said in English, Spanish, Vietnamese, Haitian/Creole, Korean and Polish on a weekly basis.