Wednesday, May 11, 2016

St. Francis Friary, 1928-2014

After a year and a half on the market, the beautiful St. Francis Friary (known as a Center for Spirituality in its modern incarnation) has been sold to the Coptic Orthodox Diocese of New York and New England to be used as their headquarters. (And they're currently seeking donations to pay for it.) I'm glad the property will not be covered with 8,000 townhouses and I'm glad it was at least Christians who bought it, but this is still a disgrace and an embarrassment. How is it possible for the Coptic church to buy and maintain this property when the Catholic Church cannot? There are only 450,000 Copts in the entire United States. In the Coptic Diocese of New York and New England, which covers Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, Rhode Island and Vermont, there are only 25 parishes and only 42 clergy; I don't know how many parishioners are in the diocese. Compare this to the New York archdiocese, which has 296 parishes and contains 2.6 million Catholics. Yet with all our resources, we could not retain the Franciscan Friary? The Franciscans made a hash of it, but with the demise of Mt. Manresa, couldn't the Archdiocese have made good use of it? 


Anonymous said...

I agree - better that, at least, it is a Christian community purchasing it, and, moreover, a traditional Church (although not in communion with Rome, pace Francis's "ecumenism of blood," which, no doubt extends in his imagination well beyond the limits of Christianity altogether, perhaps even to embrace his imaginary "true Islam"--but, not, of course, to the SSPX, who are still not in "full communion"--God shield them from what ever that may be, because I sincerely doubt he wishes them well).

On another note, does the blogger or anyone else happen to know of a "Rev. Augustini." I was baptized on Staten Island (at St. Patrick's) back in the mid 70's and his name appears (at least I think that is what is says, although it could be Augusteni) on my baptism certificate. The pastor's name listed is Aldo J. Tos. Any info on "Augustini" would be appreciated. I can find nothing on the internet. I am wondering, for instance, was he ordained prior to V2, or anything else. I would rather not call the parish office as I stopped attending Novus Ordo parishes several years ago ... and that is not something I am anxious to discuss with any of the priests there right now..

Staten Pilgrim said...

I notice that the "history" on the St. Patrick's website ( is pretty pathetic. Still, I'm sure no one would ask any questions if you made an inquiry to the office. They probably don't care what you believe now. The information is probably easily accessible, to boot. I was surprised when I had my first child baptized a couple of years ago, the pastor, after filling in the information in a gigantic, old book, flipped to an earlier section of the book and showed me my own baptismal entry, and then flipped back to the 1950s to show me that of my mother as well.

Anonymous said...

Staten Pilgrim,

Thank you for your helpful reply; I think I will, then, give the office a call, and find out who the priest was.