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Leadership team formed to assist Archbishop Lucas

Archbishop George J. Lucas will draw on a new resource for leadership beginning July 1.

A three-person team will help the archbishop guide the archdiocese and realize its pastoral vision, replacing the moderator of the curia position held by Father Joseph Taphorn, who will continue as pastor and director of the St. John Paul II Newman Center in Omaha.

The team includes Father Jeffrey Lorig, who is moving to Omaha after serving as pastor at St. Ludger Parish in Creighton and St. Ignatius Parish in Brunswick, Father Scott Hastings, vicar for clergy and judicial vicar, and Deacon Tim McNeil, chancellor.

The archbishop decided to step away from the traditional moderator of the curia management model, where one person is responsible for managing the mission, personnel and budgets of the archdiocese, said Deacon McNeil.

"Archbishop Lucas sees the leadership team model as the best strategy for implementing the pastoral vision and priorities announced in October, and it reduces the number of direct reports for any one person to manage," Deacon McNeil said.

That vision has been summarized in the phrase, "One church, encountering Jesus, equipping disciples and living mercy."

The new approach also will facilitate faith formation of department heads, managers, coordinators and clerical staff, he said.

Father Hastings said the new system will build on the strengths of current personnel resources in the archdiocese, and create efficiencies in administration and communication within the curia.

A team approach to problem solving also can be helpful, he said.

"We hope that the team approach reduces the natural tendency toward ‘siloing’ and helps the departments work together as one body," Father Hastings said. "With the ultimate goal of implementing the pastoral vision, we want to ensure we have a cohesive and efficient curial staff working toward that goal."

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