Monday, August 9, 2004

Service Held at Chruch that Archbishop Forbids to Mass At

From The St. Louis Post Dispatch:

Karen Wilga was baptized in St. Stanislaus Kostka Catholic Church more than 45 years ago. She married her husband, Vince, there in 1977 and watched her 25-year-old daughter Kristy exchange wedding vows there two summers ago.

Karen, 48, and Vince Wilga, 49, both of Florissant, are concerned the deadlocked dispute between the church and the St. Louis Archdiocese threatens the church's future as a place for their future grandchildren to worship.

"We just want our tradition to be here," Karen Wilga said. "Can you think of a better place to start your family? It's beautiful here."

On Sunday, the Wilgas joined an estimated 1,200 people from across the St. Louis area at a prayer service at the 102-year-old church, just northwest of downtown. The service replaced the church's regular Sunday Mass, halted by Archbishop Raymond Burke's withdrawal of the church's two priests last week.

The archdiocese says that St. Stanislaus' system of governance by a nonprofit lay board of directors is at odds with Catholic church laws. Many of the church's parishioners see Burke's move as a ploy for control over the church's $9 million in assets and property rights.

"It is strictly, strictly, money and power," said Ben Krauze, 64, of St. Louis, a church member for more than 50 years. "It's religious extortion."


  1. It's strange that the Post-Dispatch, which has so often inveighed against the Archbishop and the Church "imposing its belief" on others, etc. ad nauseam, would have devoted its Sunday editorial to St. Stan's and the Archbishop's "odd" decision to make it rejoin the rest of the Church. This is so clearly a purely internal Church matter, and the canon law is all on the Archbishop's side. Clearly the P-D sees a St. Stan's type of lay board as the wave of the future, a la Voice of the Faithful.

    P.S. If the Archbishop's motivation is all about "money and control," what motivates the holdouts at St. Stan's? It can't be culture and tradition, because they will still have those--notwithstanding overheated rhetoric about their church being "taken away," etc.

  2. It reminds me of that old Babtist hymn (slightly modified): "there is power, power, wonder-working power in the bucks of the flock."

    And the Abp wants HIS signature on their checking account, not theirs.


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