Vatican Rules 3 Mass. Churches Could Close

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

BOSTON (AP) -- The Vatican's highest court has upheld the decision of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Springfield to close three western Massachusetts parishes.

But the Vatican ruled against downgrading the churches from their holy status to secular buildings, saying the diocese did not justify the "relegation for profane use" for St. Stanislaus Kostka church in Adams as well as St. Patrick and St. George of Chicopee.

Diocesan spokesman Mark Dupont said Thursday that the Vatican
findings mean the churches cannot be actively used for any non-religious purpose.

The diocese is studying the possibility of issuing another decree downgrading the status of the churches, arguing that even limited use might pose a tremendous financial strain on the parishes that succeeded them.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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