Challenge Grant: Our Boosters will match donations up to $45,000. We have $38,470 to go. Please donate!
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Boston: ex-parishioners plan new round of appeals on church closings

Catholic World News - July 18, 2011

Last week Boston’s Cardinal Sean O’Malley announced that 6 closed parishes were to be “relegated to profane use,” allowing for their sale. Former parishioners at all 6 churches have now announced that they will appeal the cardinal’s order to the Vatican.

Although the Vatican has backed Cardinal O’Malley’s decision to close the parishes, the Council of Parishes, which has fought against that decision, draws hope from recent decisions in which the Vatican has ruled that even when parishes are suppressed, the churches should not be closed.

The Boston archdiocese, on the other hand, is looking forward to the sale of the parish properties. Seven years after the parishes were formally closed, a spokesman for the archdiocese says, “at some point, the vigils are going to have to end.”

The local media have been sympathetic to the protesters who have organized vigils in the closed parish buildings for several years. At one parish, a Boston Herald columnist reports, “There have been Masses every Sunday, with the Eucharist smuggled in by sympathetic priests.” That sentence is obviously inaccurate, the Eucharist is not “smuggled in” when Mass is celebrated. The protesters at the “vigil parishes” have held unauthorized Communion services. Some now say they are prepared to risk arrest, defying eviction, if necessary.

Additional sources for this story
Some links will take you to other sites, in a new window.

An appeal from our founder, Dr. Jeffrey Mirus:

Dear reader: If you found the information on this page helpful in your pursuit of a better Catholic life, please support our work with a donation. Your donation will help us reach seven million Truth-seeking readers worldwide this year. Thank you!

Our Fall Campaign
Progress toward our year-end goal ($125,848 to go):
$150,000.00 $24,151.70
84% 16%
Sound Off! CatholicCulture.org supporters weigh in.

All comments are moderated. To lighten our editing burden, only current donors are allowed to Sound Off. If you are a donor, log in to see the comment form; otherwise please support our work, and Sound Off!

Show 3 Comments? (Hidden)Hide Comments
  • Posted by: samuel.doucette1787 - Jul. 19, 2011 10:14 AM ET USA

    lauriem5377, you're absolutely right. I think too many bishops are bureaucrats and administrators first and apostles/evangelizers second or even further down the list. In Boston (where I currently live), we've been plagued by poltician bishops who are too willing to trade fidelity to Church teaching in return for political and economic prosperity for the Irish especially (ie, Cardinal Cushing looking the other way at the Kennedys).

  • Posted by: Meryt2592 - Jul. 19, 2011 1:11 AM ET USA

    I realize that this looks like disobedience. But you have to see it from the standpoint of those loyal Catholics who built these churches, worshipped in them, supported and loved them fervently. Because of a failure of leadership, and of clerical malfeasance, these very devoted people are being victimized yet again. They would be staunch supporters of their church if they were permitted to be. It isn't fair, from their point of view. It's hard to argue with them about that.

  • Posted by: lauriem5377 - Jul. 18, 2011 6:31 PM ET USA

    While I understand the need for fiscal responsibility, it seems the Church (clergy and laity) should be fervently evangilizing to fill these partially full churches, not wrenching them away from the faithful of the flock. Satan must love nothing more than the decommissioning of holy places. Pray that the Bishop and parishioners will find a way to keep these holy places open and functioning in worship of our Lord.

Fall 2014 Campaign
Subscribe for free
Shop Amazon
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Recent Catholic Commentary

Ignatius Press into the Breach: Trumping the Kasper Proposal 3 hours ago
Has the Vatican finally discovered how to avoid inaccurate English translations? 6 hours ago
The Synod: It's a Wrap! 23 hours ago
A chaotic synod? Not in its results October 21
Cardinal Kasper's unsubtle threat October 21

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days
Key synod report calls for 'gradualism' in Church response to irregular family situations CWN - October 13
As synod concludes, bishops issue message, approve document; Pope weighs in CWN - October 20
Cardinal Parolin: UN must protect innocents from Islamic State CWN - September 30
Synod of Bishops opens with Mass in St. Peter’s Basilica CWN - October 6