The Diocese of Pueblo covers a vast stretch of southern and western Colorado. A visitor crossing from east to west sees flat plains and wide valleys for the first 150 miles. But the land turns dramatic leaving Alamosa and soon you are soaring up the Rocky Mountains, topping Wolf Creek Pass at 10,850 feet and descending again to Durango. From there it is another 140 miles of mountain road to Grand Junction, where the diocese ends and Utah begins. Although Pueblo itself is a growing city, about 80 percent of the people live in small towns of less than 2,500, where farming, ranching and small business are the economic mainstays and the poverty rate is very high. Travel is so difficult and parishes so isolated that maintaining a sense of diocesan unity is a considerable pastoral challenge. Some years ago, the bishop created a system of “deanery coordinators” to connect rural parishes with the pastoral center in Pueblo. The diocese faces a severe shortage of priests, and has responded by establishing programs to recruit seminarians, and to train deacons and lay leaders. Since Hispanics make up about half the Catholic population, the need for Spanish-speaking ministers of every kind is particularly pressing.
The Diocese of Pueblo has:
- 115,000 Catholics (19% of total population)
- 106 parishes and missions (61 without resident pastor)
- 35 active priests
1001 N. Grand Avenue
Pueblo CO 81003
Fax: (719) 544-5202