‘We love and appreciate and want this priest at this church for as long as we can have him’
Hundreds of parishioners held another vigil Thursday at Holy Cross Catholic Church in Batavia Township in support of their priest, Rev. James Parker.
The Rockford Diocese notified Parker that his last day is June 15, but has not assigned him a new parish – and parishioners objected – both to him being removed and not being assigned a new parish.
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People filled the back yard of the church for the hour-long vigil. The edge of the property was lined with tall banners of saints and martyrs. Many held signs with Parker’s photo on it. Children passed out wands with blue strands of ribbon – Mary’s color – and trees were festooned with blue ribbons, all for Parker.
Supporters are also donating to a GiveSendGo.com campaign for Parker, which raised $52,000 towards its goal of $100,000.
“I am here because they are canceling Fr. Parker without any reason and they’re not assigning him to another church,” said parishioner Roxanne Malley. “So we want to know why and so we are here in prayer to support him and stop this persecution of him.”
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