Monday, December 27


The Latest on Institute of Christ the King in Chicago

The latest news of the Institute's recent aquisition of the above Chicago church, formerly slated for destruction, can be found here.

Highlights from the article:

St. Gelasius Church is a neo-Renaissance shell empty of pews and parishioners, so dilapidated it was once slated for destruction.

The plans include hiring American and European artists to fashion statues, paint altar designs and gild the robes of Christ and the Virgin Mary. The order expects to raise $5.9 million for the renovation with the help of a company that specializes in religious fundraising.

The St. Gelasius renovation is scheduled to take three years, after which it will be renamed the Shrine to the Divine Mercy and serve as the order's U.S. headquarters. (Currently in Wausau).

(All, in part, due to a pantsuit nun!)

The decision to reopen St. Gelasius was a relief to Sister Connie Driscoll, president of St. Martin de Porres House of Hope, a home for female substance abusers next to the church.

Driscoll, a plainspoken nun whose casual clothing contrasts with the priests' formal cassocks, fought the destruction of St. Gelasius last year. When workers sought entry to the shelter so they could shut off the church's electricity and gas lines to begin demolition, she refused.

(Pantsuit nuns meet The Institute)

"I said, 'Sister Teresa [O'Sullivan] and I are probably the only ones in the area that could respond in Latin,'" she recalled. "He said, 'Don't kid yourself. Once they start, they're going to have so many people, you're not going to be able to find parking.'"

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