|Candlemas at Holy Innocents, 2013|
I recently posted a petition to save Holy Innocents church in New York City, a thriving center of Catholicism with no financial debts or burdens. A friend of mine who indirectly works with the archdiocese of New York tells me there is more than meets the eye here. The parish is not being persecuted for favoring the Latin Mass. Many Manhattan parishes are subsidized because Manhattan is so expensive and many people have moved to the boroughs. Brooklyn is actually thriving, although it has its own diocese.
Holy Innocents is a self-sustaining parish which the archdiocese sees as having little upside. They hope that by closing it its congregation and wealthy donors will flock to nearby parishes—like St. John the Baptist and St. Francis, or even Holy Family near the U.N.—that have larger minority populations. This would ease the need to subsidize such large parishes that have difficulty paying the bills and would allow the archdiocese to flip the property for a profit.
Of course this is doomed to fail. The congregation and money will flock to the already successful St. Agnes near Grand Central, another wonderful parish, and ignore the nonsense of southern Manhattan, but the archdiocese may not see it that way. People need to find a charitable way to tell the archdiocese that closing Holy Innocents would damage the congregation quite a lot and benefit the chancery very little.