Judge Timothy R. Rice, writing as a guest columnist in the Nov. 26 edition of The Citizen, certainly expressed the sadness that he and the parents, alumni and local priests feel at the closing of St. Joseph School in June 2020. However, Judge Rice’s anger directed at the Most Reverend Salvatore R. Matano, bishop of Rochester, is misdirected. Of the five diocesan bishops under whom I have served, no bishop has been more supportive of and outspoken about Catholic schools than Bishop Matano. He has made it a priority of his episcopal ministry to make sure that our diocesan Catholic schools are authentically Catholic and are forming students as faithful disciples of Jesus Christ. St. Joseph School, like many other Catholic schools in the Northeast, has experienced low enrollment with a consequence of a substantial reduction of tuition and the increasing difficulty of parishes to subsidize the school given all the other financial obligations a parish has to meet today. While we mourn the closing of St. Joseph School, it is our Catholic belief that from death comes new life. May the Holy Spirit guide us to new possibilities!

The Rev. Frank E. Lioi

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The Rev. Frank E. Lioi is dean of the East Region of the Diocese of Rochester.

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