RMC – Oak Park Unification / New Reality – February 5, 2023


To Our Parishioners,

The Children’s School, which currently occupies St. Edmund School, has advised their community that the Archdiocese is not renewing their lease on the St. Edmund School property. Recently, we learned that the building is in need of extensive repairs, repairs which are not feasible to finance. The parish is also unable to financially manage the risk associated with this building while occupied by the school. These are some of the factors which led to the decision by the Archdiocese not to renew the lease. While The Children’s School and the Archdiocese began negotiations last year regarding a lease renewal, the discovery of these extensive and expensive repairs to the building make that impossible.

Further information is being gathered about St. Edmund School and will be shared with the wider community on March 6, as part of an Oak Park conversation on our parishes. The details for this event, ‘Faith, Finances, Facilities & Facts,’ are below.

In consideration of the school and the challenge they have ahead, we agreed that they would communicate this news to their community before we notified our wider community. We hope you will understand the sensitivity and difficulty of such communication.

Please reach out to either one of us with any question you may have.

Peace and Blessings,

Fr. Rex Pillai
Ascension and St. Edmund Parish

Fr. Carl Morello
St. Catherine of Siena-St. Lucy and St. Giles Parish



Eight months ago, we began a journey to form two new Catholic Parishes in Oak Park. As newly unified parish communities formed from four original parish communities, we have faced a number of challenges.

The mergers have also been a source of many blessings in our worship and in our service to our sisters and brothers. And yet, there are still many questions and uncertainties before us as we continue this journey of unification.

We invite you to an all-Oak Park Catholic Parishes Meeting to begin addressing these questions. The focus of the meeting will be Faith initiatives, Financial summaries, Facilities reports and other Facts of note.

The meeting will be Monday, March 6, at 7 pm in McDonough Hall (2nd floor), 1101 Colombian Ave., on the St. Giles Campus. The hall is handicapped accessible with a ramp on the south side of the building as well as an elevator available to reach the second floor.

Fr. Rex PillaiPastor, Ascension and St. Edmund

Fr. Carl MorelloPastor, St. Catherine of Siena-St. Lucy and St. Giles

Carlos GuerreroOperations Director, Ascension and St. Edmund

Matt BrophyOperations Director, St. Catherine of Siena-St. Lucy and St. Giles

Parish Bulletin – February 5, 2023

On Thursday, February 1, 2023, a Town Hall meeting was held in Murphy Hall on the St. Edmund campus. The purpose of the meeting was to begin sharing information about a unified Religious Education program, providing options for different methods of Religious Education for our Oak Park community and beyond. This unified process will begin this summer. As the process and plans unfold, more details will follow. Stay tuned.

The meeting also touched on establishing a Catholic Center for Lifelong Learning and Faith Formation for Oak Park and our surrounding communities and the families we serve. The next phase of Renew My Church is Building a New Reality. Although we are two parishes, we are one in sharing resources and talents when it comes to our common ministry and the call to share our faith and invite others into our faith communities. With the desire to meet folks where they are on their own journey with Christ, we can be strong and welcoming together as we share the fruits of our own Christian experiences and faith.

Good feedback was given at the meeting. However, it was clear that more conversation and clarity on what the center will offer and where, and how it will operate is needed. Please see the information shared by Marci Madary, presently the Director of Lifelong Formation here at St. Catherine-St. Lucy and St. Giles Parish. There is information about a survey you are invited to participate in as your input is welcomed and necessary. Marci is coordinating the efforts to unite the RE programs and will be the Director of the Catholic Center as it takes shape.

Father Carl Morello
Pastor of St. Catherine-St. Lucy and St. Giles Parish