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St. Stanislaus Kostka to Welcome Father Mark on Christmas Eve

December 5, 2005 North City, Religion 15 Comments

I’m not Catholic, nor am I Polish. But I’ve been following the saga of the St. Louis Archdiocese trying to take St. Stanislaus Kostka (building, land and endowment) away from the people that have worked hard to secure its future in St. Louis.

A priest is coming from Springfield to fill the void after “harshbishop” Burke pulled St. Stans’ priest a couple of years ago. KSDK reports:

In August 2004, Archbishop Raymond Burke removed the last priest after years of conflict over who controls the church and its finances.

According to the board members at St. Stanislaus, Father Mark originally wanted to come here temporarily to help the church until the issue with the Archdiocese of St.Louis was resolved. But when he was not given permission, he left his post in Springfield to come permanently.

That move got Father Mark suspended before he even arrived. In a released statement, the Archdiocese said, “Father Bozek has no authority to function as a priest in the Archdiocese of St. Louis.” Krasnicki [St. Stans legal advisor] said that’s the Archbishop’s interpretation of man-made cannon law. Krasnicki said Father Mark is still an ordained priest. Krasnicki said, “What they’re saying is his mass will be illicit and that means illegal under their rules. It doesn’t take away from the validity of the mass or the sacrament that he may impose on somebody or share with somebody or witness for someone.”

Like many city churches the parishioners have moved to the suburbs, returning each week for services. But what is unique about St. Stanislaus is they maintained their building and membership while surrounded by housing projects, including the infamous Pruitt-Igoe. So many churches in better circumstances have been unable to maintain their membership roster and building. This is an urban church that deserves to be saved. Despite claims to the contrary, if the Archdiocese gets their greedy hands on the property it is bound to be closed. The only way to keep it open is to keep it independent.

I’m not Catholic, nor am I Polish. But, the directors and parishioners of St. Stanislaus Kostka have my full support.

– Steve


Frying Fish for St. Stanislaus Kostka

February 11, 2005 Events/Meetings, North City, Religion Comments Off on Frying Fish for St. Stanislaus Kostka

I’m generally not one to advocate the Friday fish fry of a local church but in this case I’m making an exception. The Polish Falcons are having Fish Fry’s to help benefit St. Stanislaus Kostka Church from the bully on Lindell. Every Friday between now and March 18th you can get a complete dinner including desert and beverage for only $6.50. If you need more desert afterwards just take a stroll down to Crown Candy Kitchen.

If you click on the upcoming events section of St. Stans website you’ll get time and location information. If you’ve never been to the Polish Falcons for an event you are in for a treat. I can guarantee you’ll have a good time!

– Steve


St. Louis Archbishop Burke is aborting St. Louis’ Neighborhoods

I am royally pissed off. Burke is a big bully on a power trip – threatening his followers into submission. No wonder the church is riddled with pedophiles – the Archbishop teaches power and control through his actions. If Burke were the CEO of a corporation the Board of Directors would have sent him packing already.

So where are all the Catholics in our region – rallying to save St. Stanislaus from being fleeced by the Archbishop and numerous parishes from being closed? They are kneeling in submission like the obedient slaves they are. Like the best controlling masters, he is pitting his slaves against each other in a survival of the fittest competition. The slaves of parishes remaining open and in the outlying areas of the Archdiocese see the closures as giving them strength – adding to their numbers. Never mind that a century of history will be lost all over the city as numerous parishes are closed.

So these good obedient Catholics remain silent. They are unwilling or too afraid to speak out against their master wielding his interdict whip. But, we’ve seen this silence before – during the Holocaust and recently with the whole pedophile priest scandal. Catholics – ask yourself how well that worked out? What good does your silence bring? You are the Enron employee that knows what is going on but says nothing until it blows up in your face. Speak up dammit.

So why am I so upset?

I am not Catholic.

It is not my church or heritage being destroyed, you say.

True enough.

However, I have a financial commitment to the City of St. Louis. My life is here. I care about what happens in our region. So much so, I cannot sit by and watch this power hungry man destroy decades of history and the future so many of us are building.

I earn my living as a REALTOR® and buyers get concerned when you’ve got boarded up churches down the street – it doesn’t exactly send a positive message. The proposed closures all over south City and in North County should be of concern to everyone in the region. The closures of churches on the North side in the last few decades were damaging to that part of the city. Those closings did not strengthen the remaining churches on the North side – it weakened their entire base. While I think the South side is in a stronger position going into these closings than the North side was it will still be a major setback to those neighborhoods. You weaken enough neighborhoods and you weaken the entire city. A weak city at the core creates a weak and non-competitive region.
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Save St. Stanislaus Kostka Church from the greedy Archbishop!


I am neither Polish or Catholic but I know the value of maintaining the rich history that is St. Stanislaus Kostka Church in North St. Louis. While the St. Louis Archdiocese has for decades closed city parishes the lay board governing St. Stanislaus has managed to maintain its own buildings, grounds and saved for a rainy day.

If anything, the St. Stanislaus lay board should run all the affairs of all the St. Louis parishes!

The parishioners of St. Stanislaus Kostka church have put together a very informative website which will get you past the rhetoric that diocesan spokesperson Jamie Allmman is spewing.

From the St. Stanislaus Kostka website:

St. Stanislaus Kostka Chuch was built by Polish immigrants in the 1880’s. It is currently the only Polish parish remaining in St. Louis. St. Stanislaus Kostka Church is presently maintained and run as a not-for-profit corporation by the church parishioners and is recognized as such under the laws of the State of Missouri. Under a land deed signed by Cardinal Kenrick in 1891, the parish property was assigned to a parishioner-run corporation in perpetuity. Since that time, the parishioners of St. Stanislaus have grown the parish to include the eight (8) acres of land immediately surrounding the Church. The parishioners recently raised money for the construction of a $2.5 million dollar state of the art Polish Heritage Center. The total value of St. Stanislaus Church the land, buildings and financial assets – is estimated at approximately $9.5 million dollars.

Cha-ching!!! Archbishop Burke can’t be happy when a parish does well – who needs the church structure if parishes can make it on their own? As many of you know, the Archbishop is pressuring the lay board to turn over control of the church to the archdiocese. You can help them stay independent – go to the site, read what they have to say, sign up for their email list and call archdiocese and tell them what you think of their greedy tactics (the phone number is on the site).

Click here to Save St. Stanislaus Kostka Church

Click here to read my previous post on this subject from 12/8/04.

Thank you for helping Save St. Stanislaus Kostka Church!

– Steve


St. Stanislaus Kostka should not give in to St. Louis Archdiocese

December 8, 2004 North City, Religion 12 Comments

Those of you in St. Louis are well aware that St. Stanislaus Kostka Parish, founded in 1880, is being pressured to turn over control of church property and other assets (including an endowment) to the St. Louis Archdiocese. For over a century the lay board of St. Stanislaus has managed their own financial affairs – a unique arrangement I’m told. Discussion now centers on a irrevocable trust for church property & assets but I don’t trust Archbishop Burke. The members of St. Stanislaus should be commended for maintaining their church, building an endowment and remaining in a neighborhood which has seen a devastating amount of change over the last 50 years. We have this board, not the St. Louis Archdiocese, to thank for their continued presence. I hope they tell the Archbishop where he can go (don’t worry, he’ll get their eventually).

Over the last 50+ years the St. Louis Archdiocese has abandoned the City of St. Louis – closing church after church. It is almost as if they were deliberately pushing their parishioners to the suburbs. Take a tour of North St. Louis sometime – former Catholic Churches abound. Most are vacant. Most are some of the most stunningly beautiful churches I’ve ever seen – even in various states of disrepair.

Not happy with helping destroy North St. Louis, the Archdiocese now has its sights set on South St. Louis. A number of local churches built & maintained by generations of St. Louis families are going to close. The final list is still being debated but it seems to me the parishioners and the neighborhoods that will be impacted have little say in the matter. Meanwhile, demand for services from social service agencies such as Catholic Charities will increase as a result of their abandonment of the City of St. Louis. Perhaps that is the plan? Abandon the city so the social agencies can gain greater control? The residents & parishioners in the city are simply pawns in their game…

While my own personal faith has nothing to do with organized religion, I see the value to many in St. Louis for their local parish. In the suburbs you’re going to drive to church anyway – just based on their sprawl. But, in the City of St. Louis we need to see a return to the local church. The task of trying to attract new residents becomes harder without the local church in the neighborhood.

The St. Louis Archdiocese is making major mistakes that will have a very long lasting affect on the rebirth of St. Louis.

– Steve