For people who attend daily Mass, it is quite clear that they would never accept the termination of their parish.
Mass has a special priority for them, because it permits them to receive the Body and Blood of Jesus Christ the Son of God every day. It is the same Body and Blood that Jesus shared with his disciples the night before the crucifixion.
Our priests emphasize that Jesus loves his brothers and sisters. This is why he came to Earth to live our life and experience the horrifying suffering and death that led to our redemption.
One of the powerful events expressing Jesus’ love for his brothers and sisters happened just before Jesus died on the cross for our sins.
The good thief acknowledged that he was a sinner and requested Jesus’ forgiveness. Who could ever forget that Jesus said to him: “This day thou shall be with me in paradise!”
Two days later, the Son of God revealed His Resurrection to Mary Magdalen before anyone else. Our incredible Savior, the son of God, only wants us to repent to save us.
Thus the Body and Blood that we can receive at Holy Communion at daily Masses are extraordinary gifts that change our lives to be more acceptable to God.
Holy Communion, Confession, and Baptism are normally available only at Church. How could anybody want to close a parish to eliminate the availability of these God-given wonders?
Take away a church and you destroy access to the Sacramental life of already faithful Catholics! This is absolutely wrong! And if the parish includes a school, it is a double disaster. There is nothing more important than evangelizing our children.
Each parish in the Archdiocese of St. Louis has grown and developed over years, decades, or even centuries to provide all the Sacraments that Christ himself established. Terminating Christ’s Sacraments by terminating churches is a disaster.
Suppose that there are 30 people going to daily mass in each parish. This would be more than 10,000 Masses and receptions of the Sacraments per year. And on Sundays, supposed there are 200 people going to Mass each Sunday. This would be another 10,000 Masses and receptions of the Sacrament per year. Thus closing of a single parish
1 would result in more than 20,000 Masses and receptions of the Sacraments that would not be available to faithful Catholics each year. This would be an utter catastrophe.
What are the benefits of All Things New that would offset this catastrophic loss of access to the Sacraments that Jesus Christ established for us?
It is very probable that the financial support of the Archdiocese is originating in the people who go to Mass more frequently than others. This would include a lot of Catholics who go to daily Mass. This is another reason not to destroy parishes.
The All Things New webpage (allthingsnew.archstl.org) speaks multiple times about sustainability. This suggests that the Archdiocese may be having financial problems. However, there is no hard data of numbers and facts that would be useful.
There are approximately 194 parishes in the St. Louis Archdiocese. We were able to find real estate appraisal data for 55 of these parishes in St. Louis County in the St. Louis County records. The total appraised value for the real estate of just these 55 parishes was approximately $250,000,000 (two hundred and fifty million dollars). This does not include any parishes in St. Charles County, Lincoln County, Warren County, Franklin County, Jefferson County, Washington County, St. Francois County, St. Genevieve County, Perry County, or St. Louis City.
Also, it seems that the real estate of many of these parishes is not actually owned by the Archdiocese. According to St. Louis County records, the real estate is owned by an entity called St. Louis County Catholic Church Real Estate Corporation, which is not the same entity as the Archdiocese. This raises the question, if parishes are closed and the real estate is sold, who gets the money?
To look into this, we are asking the St. Louis Archdiocese to provide an audit of the complete fiscal operation of the Archdiocese, available to the whole community, to explain why this is being done.
If the Archdiocese is in financial difficulty, the transparency provided by an audit will help rectify the situation as well as protect the Archdiocese in the future. There are many dedicated Catholics with extensive financial expertise that might be able to help given an audit. Perhaps they can provide a better solution than shutting down and selling off parishes.
Parish Appraised Values (from St. Louis County Records)
|All Saints University City||2,700,000|
|Blessed Teresa of Calcutta Ferguson||5,200,000|
|Christ Prince of Peace||7,300,000|
|Christ the King University City||1,400,000|
|Cure of Ars Shrewsbury||2,500,000|
|Holy Name of Jesus Bissell Hills||3,700,000|
|Holy Redeemer Webster Groves||6,900,000|
|Holy Spirit Maryland Heights||4,900,000|
|Immacolata Richmond Heights||9,400,000|
|Immaculate Conception Maplewood||2,700,000|
|Incarnate Word Chesterfield||13,600,000|
|Little Flower Richmond Heights||5,300,000|
|Mary Mother of the Church Mattese||2,400,000|
|Most Sacred Heart Eureka||5,600,000|
|Our Lady of Lourdes University City||1,700,000|
|Our Lady of the Pillar Creve Coeur||7,500,000|
|Our Lady of the Presentation Overland||5,600,000|
|Queen of All Saints Oakville||1,900,000|
|Sacred Heart Florissant||3,100,000|
|Sacred Heart Valley Park||800,000|
|Seven Holy Founders Afton||8,100,000|
|St. Alban Roe Wildwood||9,600,000|
|St. Angela Merici Florissant||5,000,000|
|St. Ann Normandy||3,800,000|
|St. Bernadette Lemay||5,000,000|
|St. Catherine Labore Sappington||9,100,000|
|St. Clare of Assisi Ellisville||8,500,000|
|St. Clement Des Peres||7,800,000|
|St. Elizabeth of Hungary Crestwood||3,400,000|
|St. Ferdinand Florissant||4,000,000|
|St. Francis of Assisi Oakville||8,600,000|
|St. Gerard Majella Kirkwood||9,500,000|
|St. John Bosco Creve Coeur||4,300,000|
|St. John Paul II Afton||4,700,000|
|St. Joseph Clayton||10,000,000|
|St. Justin Martyr Sunset Hills||3,900,000|
|St. Luke Richmond Heights||3,700,000|
|St. Margaret Mary Alacopque Mehlville||7,900,000|
|St. Mark Lemay||4,800,000|
|St. Martin de Porres Hazelwood||3,600,000|
|St. Mary Magdalen Brentwood||4,800,000|
|St. Matthias Lemay||3,100,000|
|St. Michael Shrewsbury||2,800,000|
|St. Monica Creve Coeur||10,300,000|
|St. Paul Fenton||5,700,000|
|St. Peter Kirkwood||2,900,000|
|St. Richard Creve Coeur||2,700,000|
|St. Peter Kirkwood||2,900,000|
|St. Peter Kirkwood||2,900,000|
|St. Rita Vinita Park||1,100,000|
|St. Rose Philippine Duchesne Florissant||4,300,000|
|St. Sabina Florissant||3,900,000|
|St. Simon the Apostle Green Park||7,500,000|
|Total of 55 St. Louis County Parishes||$249,900,000|