Father Jason Worley was expected to become pastor of St. Peter the Apostle in Libertytown five years ago before a devastating fire changed the plans. Cardinal William H. Keeler, retired archbishop of Baltimore, instead asked Monsignor John Dietzenbach to stay on as pastor to shepherd the faith community through the building of a new church.
Now that the new church has been dedicated and Monsignor Dietzenbach has been reassigned to be pastor of Church of the Resurrection in Ellicott City, Father Worley is getting his chance in Libertytown. He will become pastor of the 1,800-family parish in September.
“I’m very excited about the transition,” said Father Worley, current pastor of Our Lady Queen of Peace in Middle River. “St. Peter’s is a wonderful parish.”
The 43-year-old priest said it is bittersweet to leave his current parish. He served one year as administrator and four years as pastor of the 1,450-family faith community.
“They are very faith-filled and very welcoming people,” he said. “From day one, I felt welcome and part of the family.”
Asked what he plans to bring to Libertytown from his experiences in Middle River, Father Worley responded: “a listening ear, an open heart and a willingness to work with the people.”
Raised in St. Michael the Archangel, Overlea, Father Worley attended the parish elementary school there. He graduated from Towson Catholic High School and St. Hyacinth College in Massachusetts before enrolling in Mount St. Mary’s Seminary, Emmitsburg. Cardinal Keeler ordained him to the priesthood in 1999.
Father Worley previously served as associate pastor of St. Mark, Catonsville, and Our Lady of Mount Carmel, Essex. He became pastor of Queen of Peace in 2005.
In his new role in Frederick County, Father Worley said he will spend a lot of time listening to parishioners. He plans to continue the strong vocations outreach that has produced many priests from the parish.