By ARCHBISHOP WILTON D. GREGORY | Published January 9, 2014
The priests from Christ the King Cathedral rectory will be moving into my current residence sometime during this coming year after some expansion work is completed. The Cathedral planning committee recommended that their pastor approach me about three years ago to see if I would be willing to sell the Archbishop’s residence to the Cathedral parish in order to become their new rectory, thus allowing them eventually to develop the Cathedral’s facilities by tearing down the existing rectory and using that property for an expansion project.
I told Msgr. Frank McNamee that I was more than willing to switch my home so that the Cathedral priests could move into the longstanding residence of the Atlanta Archbishops and thus enable the Cathedral to continue to increase its pastoral presence in a way that would help to strengthen this vibrant parish. What a happy dilemma for our Cathedral to need more space to augment its pastoral services to a growing parish family.
The revenue that the Archdiocese received from selling the Archbishop’s residence to the Cathedral parish has now been used to build a new house on the property that was received as part of the Joseph Mitchell bequest. This bequest has been a source of tremendous benefit for many groups within the Archdiocese of Atlanta—all of our parishes and schools, Catholic Charities, Cristo Rey Atlanta Jesuit High School, priests, deacons, religious men and women, and, of course, the Cathedral community itself, Joe’s Mitchell’s cherished parish home.
I will soon be living a little farther away from the Cathedral, but a little closer to the Chancery, while the Cathedral priests will be within walking distance of the Cathedral plant—something that the planning committee sought as a high priority.
I want to thank all of the people who have worked to make this transition possible, especially the Cathedral parishioners themselves who have supported this initiative and taken those steps to make it possible and relatively painless—or at least as painless as any move can be. I offer my personal and sincere thanks to the oversight committee that watched over the design and construction of the new residence and kept me informed and involved—without being distracted by the details.
The new residence, much like the current one, has been designed to and will be available to host a number of events throughout the year that bring the clergy, religious, seminarians, young adults, consultative bodies and other folks as welcome guests into the Archbishop’s home. I look forward soon to opening the doors of my new home to as many people as I can over the course of the years ahead—a tradition that I have come to treasure as part of my pastoral service as did the former Archbishops of Atlanta.
The original house on West Wesley Road will need some serious expansion in order for it to accommodate the six priests who will soon call it their new home. Once again, the Cathedral parishioners have been most supportive of these plans, which will result in an eventual expansion of the facilities at the Cathedral plant.
As any of you who have ever endured a house renovation project know, patience will be the order of the day, but the results will keep the Cathedral priests close to the facility and allow an important and eventual development of the space that was once the old rectory.
Our Archdiocese is blessed to be growing and expanding, opening many new facilities throughout these 69 counties in North and Central Georgia. Our ongoing growth is a gift that comes from the Lord Himself and is a sign of His grace.