Jesuit Urban Center to close; money woes cited

Jesuit Urban Center to close; money woes cited

Here’s a “parish closing” I don’t think will be protested by many here: The Jesuits are closing the Jesuit Urban Center in Boston. The JUC has long been known as a gay cruising spot, having once been voted as the top such place by “Boston” magazine.

In addition, it’s been known for the extent of heterodoxy spread about in that place, which has come to bear little resemblance to the actual Catholic faith. As Diogenes said, the rainbow sashes hung over the sanctuary are superfluous.

How about this Feast of Christ the King homily by Fr. John Loftus, SJ?

… I’m sure there are many more in our community who can say that they have had some first-hand experience with Queens. But I’ve decided that it’s probably best not to go there! (Although it has been seriously suggested by some, like Matthew Fox, that the contemporary church does need to learn to speak of the Queendom of Christ). Personally I don’t think that image really helps much. And the more neutral “reign” of God doesn’t help many either.

And let’s not forget last year’s Ash Wednesday homily that advised parishioners to “Let this Lent be a Brokeback Lent.”

So, why are they closing this font of so-called Jesuit values? Money.

The Rev. Thomas J. Regan , the superior of the New England Jesuits, said in an interview that the rationale for the closing is purely financial. He said that the order, long associated with education, has become financially reliant on the salaries paid to priests who teach at Boston College, the College of the Holy Cross, and Fairfield University — all Jesuit schools — but that as many of those priests retire or die, the order is being forced to cut back on its activities.

Regan said that he had received no pressure from the Vatican, the Jesuit headquarters in Rome, or the Archdiocese of Boston, to close the church, and that the sexual orientation of the worshipers played no role in his decision.

As I said when Fr. Walter Cuenin was removed from his parish for financial improprieties and not his track record of heterodox advocacy, why not? Why wasn’t the place reprimanded or pressured to change its wayward activities?

Incidentally, I wonder when Voice of the Faithful and the Council of Parishes will issue their press releases deploring this parish closing and when the parishioners will occupy the church to keep it from closing and accuse the Jesuits of being money-grubbers and insensitive to the pastoral needs of the people.

Where will they go?

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Written by
Domenico Bettinelli