Worth more than money: Vatican blocks 'deconsecration' of historic Catholic church
By Marshall Connolly (Catholic Online)
2/21/2014 (3 years ago)
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)
A priceless parish church in Buffalo, New York has been spared the wrecking ball, for now, thanks to the advocacy of its parishioners. St. Ann's parish in Buffalo, NY, was slated for "deconsecration" after the diocese concluded it could not finance the repair of the church and consolidated its parish communities.
St. Ann's is an architectural and cultural gem of faith. It is worth more than just money.
LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - It required help from the Vatican, but St. Ann's church in Buffalo, NY, has been spared the wrecking ball, at least for now. The beautiful church was built in 1886 and is considered a priceless treasure of architecture and faith. Unfortunately, in a world of limited resources there really is no such thing as priceless, from an accounting perspective.
Facing a potential bill exceeding $12 million for repair and renovation of the structure, the Catholic Diocese of Buffalo made the difficult decision to deconsecrate the church and put the building on the market. A buyer would have the option of converting the structure to secular use or to demolish it altogether.
Concerned parishioners appealed to the Vatican, suing the diocese in a Vatican court to stop the proposed liquidation of St. Ann's. Thankfully and prayerfully, they won.
A decree was issued by the Vatican that forbids the use of the structure for anything other than religious purposes. It also forbids conversion of the church by developers. Therefore, St. Ann's will have to remain a church, as intended.
Still, the diocese has pledged that it will appeal the decision to the Apostolic Signatura, which is the Vatican equivalent of the Supreme Court.
The parish community of St. Ann's has already been folded into a neighboring parish.
The Catholic Church has enjoyed explosive growth in various parts of the world, but has suffered decline in the United States. Only recently, with the publicity and popularity of Pope Francis, have attendance numbers in some places apparently reversed a downward trend.
As a way of managing decline, some diocese have made the painful decision to shutter some locations and to sell property. Sadly, some of those churches, like St. Ann's are beautiful examples of 19th century American architecture and do not deserve to meet a wrecking-ball. Nor should they be converted to secular use, which is quintessentially profane.
A restaurant, apartments, shopping, perhaps a wrecking ball, really?!
Relatively speaking, modern churches tend to be cheaply built affairs, and never inspire the same kind of reverence that can be found in a an architectural gem like St. Anne's. The preservation of the church, even if it will be expensive and difficult, is worth its cost if it inspires people to come closer to God. Those who built St. Ann's were not fools. Their design choices were deliberate and based on traditional designs that have served the Catholic Church for centuries. The church is a wonderful example of architecture that points to heaven.
Those who seek to save St. Ann's aren't fools either. Some treasures are worth more than just money.
Copyright 2017 - Distributed by THE CALIFORNIA NETWORK
Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for FEBRUARY 2017
Comfort for the Afflicted. That all those who are afflicted, especially the poor, refugees, and marginalized, may find welcome and comfort in our communities.
Venezuela has pulled CNN off the air for what it says is" fake and hostile news." An order from the national telecommunications commission ... continue reading
A two-part report made public on Tuesday detail sexual, physical and psychological abuses committed by members of the Sodalitium ... continue reading
Is climate change responsible for the WORST yellow fever outbreak on record? 157 CONFIRMED DEATHS - How can you protect yourself? Watch
The Brazilian Ministry of Health reported an ongoing yellow fever outbreak beginning in December 2016. Since then, the disease has been ... continue reading
Colombia is the only country in the Americas where child soldiers can still be found. Rome, Italy (CNA/EWTN News) - Despite the recent ... continue reading
An unusual "hand-shaped" cloud appeared in the skies of central Mexico earlier this month. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - A local man ... continue reading
by Catholic Online
- Daily Reading for Tuesday, February 28th, 2017 HD Video
- Daily Readings for Sunday, February 26, 2017
- Femenist legal scholars debate - Is the Catholic Church anti-women?
- Clinton contributor makes revealing 'life insurance' video over fear ...
- 110-year-old nun shares the secret to a long life
- 'While high on heroin, I started reading the New Testament' - Amazing ...
- St. Isabel of France: Saint of the Day for Sunday, February 26, 2017
- Daily Reading for Monday, February 27th, 2017 HD
- Daily Reading for Sunday, February 26th, 2017 HD
- Urgent action necessary for 5.5 million people starving in South Sudan HD
- Trump dumps Obama's transgender restroom policy HD
Copyright 2017 Catholic Online. All materials contained on this site, whether written, audible or visual are the exclusive property of Catholic Online and are protected under U.S. and International copyright laws, © Copyright 2017 Catholic Online. Any unauthorized use, without prior written consent of Catholic Online is strictly forbidden and prohibited.