The Boston Globe‘s Bella English continues her effort to pit parishioners against the Archdiocese of Boston through slanted and incomplete reporting. This time her gaze has shifted to St. Frances Cabrini Parish in Scituate. It was scheduled to close on October 25, but when a door was left open after the locks were changed, the protesters came in and began their sit-in.
English continues with the same twisted arguments for why the parish souldn’t close, ignoring Archbishop O’Malley’s own stated reasons and pushing unrealistic and contrived solutions.
Like some of the other churches in vigil, St. Frances meets none of the criteria put forth by the archdiocese for closing: it is financially self-sustaining, its buildings are in good shape, its pews full.
This was not the criteria put forward for closings. It is an oversimplification of a more complicated matrix. But anticipating this objection, English elicits a pre-emptive response:
Rogers ticks off the reasons the archdiocese gives for closing a church, and then gives the counter-argument. Changing demographics: ‘‘There are more people moving in to Scituate. The building department expects to hand out 900 permits this year, 200 more than last year.” Finances: ‘‘We sustain ourselves, and another church” in India. Dilapidated buildings: ‘‘Our building is as perfect as it can get.” Shortage of priests: ‘‘We’ll hire retired priests on a part-time basis.”
What of the argument that suburban churches must be sacrificed to save some poorer urban churches? ‘‘Why don’t they just use us as a great resource to help other churches by raising more money rather than just shutting us down?” Rogers asks.