LIMA — At age 70, the Rev. David Ross is ready to take it easy.
Ross, who oversees St. Rose and St. John Catholic church parishes in Lima, has announced his retirement, effective July 1.
Ross was ordained as a priest at St. Gerard Catholic Church in Lima in July 1975. He attended St. Gerard Elementary School and was a 1967 graduate of Lima Central Catholic High School.
Ross previously served as an associate pastor at St. Wendelin Parish in Fostoria, St. Mary parish in Tiffin and St. Joseph parish in Fremont and as pastor at Sacred Heart of Jesus Parish in Toledo, St. Pius X Parish in Tiffin, St. Charles Borromeo Parish in Lima and St. Mary Parish in Tiffin.
Ross is the only priest in the Diocese of Toledo to serve all four Catholic churches in Lima.
He says it’s time to slow down.
“Like most pastors with experience, I want to give up administrative responsibilities,” he said. “I love being a priest. I love doing all the sacraments and all this stuff, but it’s three things I want to surrender — conflict management, personnel and buildings and maintenance. Most pastors, whether you’re Catholic or not, find those to be the greatest burdens. But if you can just preach the gospel and, for me, celebrating the sacraments are the happiest moments of your life.”
But don’t expect him to fade away.
“I’m going to stay in Lima. I’ll help out at diverse parishes and hospitals and high schools and stuff like that. So I’ll be happy to be here. It’s sort of like a partial retirement, a partial segue to something less, less demanding. So there are two golf courses. There’s the Notre Dame football games,” said Ross with a chuckle.
Ross paused on the highlights of his career.
“Oh God, that’s a good question,” he said. “Living in Lima. That’s the biggest highlight —living down here and being with the folks in Lima and being involved in the community and helping anything to do with the advancement of our community life. That’s the best thing from my perspective.”
He had some positive advice for his replacement.
“Get ready for a great life here in Lima.”
Ross considers himself blessed.
“I’m one lucky guy, one lucky guy to be here,” he added.
Reach Sam Shriver at 567-242-0409.