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Vatican rules against New York diocese in parish closure

May 25, 2011

Following an appeal from parishioners and heeding recent precedent, the Vatican has ruled that the Diocese of Syracuse should not deconsecrate a closed parish church but must instead maintain it as a worship site. Following the 2007 closing of the parish, laity maintained a year-long vigil until they were escorted out by a sheriff’s department officer.

The decision “may mean the people could be given access to the church, but it may not mean it will be assigned a priest,” said Matthew Loveland, a sociology professor at LeMoyne College, in reference to St. Mary’s Church in Jamesville, New York. “It’s still very symbolic, as the church has had a lock on the door.”


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  • Posted by: stpetric - Jun. 02, 2011 9:44 PM ET USA

    I acknowledge that may very well be more going on here that we don't know about. I hope so! But as is, I am not encouraged by this level of intra-diocesan micro-management by Rome. The presumption ought to be that the bishop's decision stands.