What's going down in the Diocese of Rochester (NY) you ask? (Okay, you probably don't but you should.) Well, the number of priests is way down; from 1995 to 2005 the diocese lost 45% of them. Mass attendance is also down, 25% since 2002. The reason for the depressing numbers is an old and familiar one to this ex-Episcopalian: an out-of-control bishop, heedless of the consequences, pushing through an innovative agenda, in this instance attempting to transform Holy Church into a typically modern liberal protestant denomination with ageing feminists, both lay and religious, calling the shots. Alas, the bishop has been largely successful in his efforts, to the point where in his diocese, similarly to most mainstream protestant denominations, parishioners and priests stay away in droves.
In the Diocese of Rochester, for example, six women, calling themselves "lay administrators," are in charge of twelve parishes. Elsewhere in the diocese there are five women religious in charge of 11 churches. The administrators answer to the bishop while the priests answer to the administrators--only they are not called priests, rather "sacramental ministers" or in the much more colorful words of a critic, "sacramental Pez machines." One can only imagine the ghastly state of the liturgy in this 'seventies era nightmare. Read all the sordid details here.
In the Diocese of Rochester, as well the Diocese of Albany (my how things have come to a sorry pass for Holy Mother Church in upstate New York!), traditional Catholics count the days till these dreadful liberal bishops mercifully retire.
Thanks to Inigo Hicks.