SCRANTON – The Most Reverend Joseph C. Bambera, Bishop of Scranton, has announced that Mary Hallman has been named Diocesan Secretary for Parish Life. Hallman was selected from a number of highly qualified candidates following an extensive nationwide search process. She began her new position on Jan. 3, 2022.
Hallman joins the Diocese after most recently serving as Director of Evangelization in the Diocese of Syracuse for eight years. In that position, she worked closely with both clergy and lay leaders, forming relationships and building trust, in an effort to create vibrant parishes and form disciples of Jesus Christ. Through her experiences in that position, Hallman is keenly aware of the many obstacles that parishes face and has been successful in collaboratively implementing innovative solutions.
Prior to her work at the diocesan level, Hallman also served for five years in parish ministry as Director of Evangelization & Catechesis at Saint Charles/Saint Ann Parish in Syracuse. During that time, she assisted in implementing a parish strategy for conversion and discipleship that was inclusive of adults, children and youth.
She holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of California, Irvine, and a master’s degree in theology from Augustine Institute in Denver, Colo.
“Mary’s skills and qualifications will be a tremendous asset to the Office for Parish Life and all of our parishes, especially as we continue our long-range pastoral planning process in the Diocese of Scranton,” Bishop Bambera said. “She shares the Diocese of Scranton’s mission of calling all the baptized to imitate the servant leadership of Jesus and to enter into a personal relationship with Him.”
“In my short time in the Diocese of Scranton, I have come to know so many people who are committed to building a more vibrant Church that meets the needs of the poor and the disenfranchised. God is already at work,” Hallman said. “I believe God has provided us with everything we need; our challenge is to intentionally call forth the gifts and talents of the laity so each person recognizes their particular role in the missionary work of our parishes. The future depends on our willingness to surrender our lives to Christ and live distinctively, in a way that is attractive to those who are far from the Church. We are all called to grow as disciples.”
As Diocesan Secretary for Parish Life, Hallman is responsible for overseeing the Office for Parish Life and its team, as well as regularly interacting with Regional Episcopal Vicars, Deans, Pastors, Priests, Parish Life Coordinators and Deacons regarding diocesan initiatives and services related to parish vitality. She will also play a key role in the Vision 2030 Blueprint Process, which is the long-range pastoral planning process for the Diocese of Scranton.
While looking proactively at the realities of our local church in the present moment, Vision 2030 strives to meet the opportunities and challenges of the coming decade in order to create vibrant expressions of parish life rooted in the life of Jesus Christ.
“The collaborative style of Bishop Bambera and his leadership team is what brought me to the Diocese of Scranton. Like most dioceses, especially during COVID, we have challenges, but we are able to see them together and share our hopes and dreams. It’s an exciting time, with lots of opportunities! I’m hoping the experiences of my life – as a Catholic school student, a college student involved in campus ministry, a youth ministry coordinator, Director of Faith Formation for linked parishes, and diocesan Director of Evangelization – allow me to contribute from a variety of perspectives. With the great team in place in the Office for Parish Life, we look forward to supporting parishes through the Vision 2030 process and beyond,” Hallman added.
Hallman welcomes the opportunity to network and collaborate with clergy and parish staffs. She can be reached in the Office for Parish Life at (570) 207-2213.