Saint Meinrad Archabbey in Spencer County has announced layoffs at its Abbey Press unit. In a notice to the state, the archabbey says 71 employees will be out of work following the closure of the Abbey Press trade marketing and printing divisions, which is expected to take place in mid-2017.
The layoffs are expected to begin in February and continue in stages until the end of June. Saint Meinrad Archabbey says the two divisions have been printing and marketing Christian books and gifts for nearly 150 years. The publications division of Abbey Press will remain in operation.
The archabbey says the challenges of a competitive marketplace, such as rising costs, changing technology and declining religious gift store markets, led to the closure.
"The Press has had a long, rich history of service and outreach to people of faith, and our co-workers are very proud of that," said Archabbot Kurt Stasiak. "It’s heart-breaking to see so many lose their jobs, when they have tirelessly devoted their lives to this place and its mission."
The employees affected by the layoffs include full-time and part-time workers. The archabbey says they will receive generous severance packages, along with employment and counseling services.