Open letter to Council President Darrell L. Clarke and the Faithful Laurentians

Please click here to sign your name.  We would like to deliver this by Friday, February 1st. Feel free to share as widely as possible.

Dear Carolyn Bechta Devine, Frank Brzozowski, and other members of the Faithful Laurentians:

We, the parents of children attending St. Laurentius School, members of the Holy Name parish, and your neighbors, are writing this letter to you to beg that you immediately cease your lawsuit against the people trying to develop the historically-designated building known as St. Laurentius.

Your persistence has done nothing but to delay the restoration of the building while putting our neighbors and, most importantly, our children at risk of injury and even death from falling debris. We call on you to reconsider your position in light of recent degradation that has caused the school to have to close for safety reasons.

In light of the seriousness of the danger, we also ask that Council President Clarke take immediate legislative action to see this to a proper resolution if the Faithful Laurentians do not desist in their suit. Every day the risk to our neighborhood’s historical fabric, our institutions, and our children grows.

Do you want the people of this neighborhood to remember you as the people who caused the loss of this beautiful part of our neighborhood? Do you want to be remembered as the people who were responsible for the closing of our only remaining Catholic school and parish? If a child is injured by falling debris, do you want to be remembered as the reason why?

It is not too late for all parties to do the right thing. Please act immediately to prevent future tragedy.

Please click here to sign your name.

“Faithful Laurentians” will have hearing in Harrisburg to demonstrate why their case should not be dismissed

The Commonwealth Court held a hearing yesterday regarding the “Faithful Laurentians” pending appeal before it.  The Court scheduled the hearing because the founder of the “Faithful Laurentians” Venise Whitaker told the Court in a letter that she no longer supported the appeal and was unsure if the group even exists.  She asked the Court to remove her as an appellant by letter in June and has told the Court that she is no longer a part of the “Faithful Laurentians.”

We are unsure who the “Faithful Laurentians” are or what their plans are other than to try to ensure the demolition of St. Laurentius Church building, as the Archdiocese of Philadelphia has wanted to do for five years.  We are also unsure who the “Faithful Laurentians” are, as we and many others in the community have asked them to hold a public meeting to discuss their promised plans for a cultural center, wedding venue or whatever their next quixotic plan for the church building is now.

The Commonwealth Court has ordered a hearing for August 9, 2018 in Harrisburg at which the “Faithful Laurentians” will have to demonstrate to the Court the reasons why their frivolous appeal of a case for which they were found not to have standing in the first place should not be dismissed.  Instead of just abandoning this appeal and allowing the church to be preserved by the only development put forth to save the building, this “group,” which appears to be comprised solely of lone appellant Caroyln Devine, continues this litigation which serves to further endanger the structural integrity of the building and enrich the lawyers who bill our parish to fight their nonsensical court case.  They profess to care about the beauty, history, and honoring previous generations.  Their stubborn, petty and, thus far legally deficient, appeal demonstrates the exact opposite  The colossal waste that they have caused of our parish and school funds spent in dealing with their crackpot scheme from day one is something that we will never be able to recover.  The money that could have been spent to improve the parish and school is gone.  When they eventually lose their case, this “group” will say they fought to the end, but in reality “they” didn’t.  They just acted out of spite for personal reasons and have never once acted in the best interests of the church and parish community of St. Laurentius.

Below is a link to the docket where you can see the course of the appeal and where it stands.  We ask that if you have any contact with anyone who is a member of this “group” to please ask them to end this litigation and allow St. Laurentius Church to be preserved for generations to come.

Faithful Laurentians, where are you???

Faithful Laurentians, why have you not responded?
Mrs. Curtis, why have you not responded?

PLEASE RESPOND. We know that at least one of the people bringing the appeal has stopped. WHY HAVE YOU CONTINUED? Please advise WHEN and WHERE the public meeting will be. You can send information to us via facebook, or to Fr. Bradley via Holy Name Church, 701 Gaul Street, HNJ Rectory, Philadelphia, PA 19125

Folks, someone is Wisconsin is pushing an agenda that will not work here in Philadelphia. Help us make it stop before history is erased.

Call to Action

In 2014, the AOPs plan was to demolish the church and squander the proceeds of St Laurentius and Holy Name assets.

The community stopped that foolish waste, had the church designated historic, and now a buyer stands poised to fix the church and save the parish funds from being wasted on a frivolous demolition.

Remember when the AOP and some of the members of the parish council were telling everyone the church was a danger? That was over 3 years ago!!!!

Ask the AOP why they continue to allow the church to sit when it could be repaired right now? Why do they hold important funds hostage from our parish?

Is it because they still want to demolish the church? And use our parish money to do so? Holy Name parish currently has over $800,000 sitting in an AOP-controlled escrow account that the AOP refuses to allow our parish to access.

Please call these AOP representatives and ask them why they are endangering the community and not acting in the best fiduciary interests of the Archdiocese and our parish:

Name: Deacon Thomas Croke
Title: Director of Real Estate Services
Phone: 215-587-3560

Name: Timothy O’Shaughnessy
Title: Chief Financial Officer
Phone: 215-587-4510

Name: James Bock Jr.
Title: Secretary for Temporal Services
Phone: 215-587-3959

Name: Karen Egelkamp
Title: Coordinator for Capital Projects
Phone: 215-587-3560