One of the less talked about impacts of the decline of the Church in America is the selling off of Church property, mostly by religious communities. It's happening, quietly, all over America, and the money is in the billions.
Much of the property being bought off is owned by women religious communities who long ago gave up the habit and devotional life to embrace radical feminism and lesbianism, not to mention some witchcraft thrown in for good measure.
Everywhere in the country, aging feminists who have financial control of much of the Church's collective wealth are selling it off, and no one knows exactly where the money is going. Now remember this important starting point when thinking of this: the big picture.
Almost all the wealth any given religious community has was donated to it by the faithful for the sole purpose of advancing the Catholic religion to save souls. So in the spiritual sense, a religious community does not own the property or bank accounts or whatever. They are merely custodians or stewards of someone else's wealth given to them trustingly to use for a single-minded purpose.
Of course, once the money or property is given over, it legally belongs to the community, but Catholics answer to a higher law in our dealings with each other.
But not anymore — as the religious orders shrink exponentially, the old unfaithful women who run them are cashing in, liquidating their assets as an astonishing rate and abandoning any moral duty to the people who originally gave them the money.
For example, here in the archdiocese of Detroit, Marygrove College run by the IHM nuns is now no longer run by the IHM nuns, but it still has the word "Catholic" brandished across its website.
In truth, the rebellious women who ran Marygrove haven't been discernibly Catholic for years, but they kept up the appearance of it to lure some students to campus. But the facade had more than run its course as enrollment continued to decline. I mean, who wants to go to a Catholic college and attend lectures from old lesbians in pantsuits stuck in the 1970s halcyon days of bra burning and habits being ripped off?
The school ran into massive debt eventually totaling close to $16 million. The old feminists who ran the place wanted their pound of flesh so they could finance their retirements, so through some legal maneuvering and financial restructuring, the old women managed to get $6 million for themselves.
But here's where it gets interesting. They got it by the transfer of title to a new board, all of which was financed by an enormous grant from the Kresge Foundation here in Metro Detroit.
The final price tag — or grant investment — was $50 million, and it all went on right under the nose of the archdiocese of Detroit, in fact just a couple of miles from the chancery.
The secular Kresge Foundation is involved in a large number of charitable activities as well as social engineering endeavors, and Kresge wanted the campus in order to institute a new K-12 school system and grad school for teacher training.
So the new board doesn't have anything to do with the Church anymore. And under canon law, this becomes a problem. No Church property over $12 million is allowed to be sold or transferred without Church approval, or in this case, the permission of Detroit Abp. Allen Vigneron and the Holy See. But under his absentee leadership, it's likely the old ladies simply ignored him, did the deal and collected their millions.
Now we say "absentee leadership" for a specific reason. Vigneron has deliberately kept as far away from Marygrove College as possible for a very specific reason. Marygrove has been the home of the world's oldest continual gay mass — moving to Marygrove from a Detroit parish more than 20 years ago.
Detroit Dignity, a notoriously rebellious group of active homosexuals claiming to be Catholic, was started in Detroit more than 40 years ago by some of the very senior leadership of the archdiocese still in place.
Likewise, it has continued to be supported over the years by many area clergy, as well as Abp. Vigneron, who is not only longtime friends with his senior staff who were instrumental in getting Dignity up and running, but who also has not made one public comment or ever taken one step to end these disgraceful "Masses" that happen each week in Marygrove's main chapel — every Sunday at 6 p.m.
Vigneron allows some of his own clergy to offer the weekly Mass, which is little else than a gay bar scene without the booze.
Despite protests and appeals from faithful Catholics to take action, Vigneron has completely ignored all of it, looked the other way so as not to upset his longtime relationships with his pro-gay senior clergy, his buddies from back in the day when they all went to seminary here together.
His communications boss, Ned McGrath, virtually made a career out of lying about the Dignity Mass being held on Church property — Holy Trinity parish years ago — until enough public exposure finally forced the issue and it was transferred to Marygrove back in the 1990s.
But now, with the canonically dubious sale — or transfer — of the property away from the Catholic in name only religious order — illegal according to canon law — the property is now civilly and canonically no longer Catholic.
It has passed into the realm of what the Church calls profane use. That passage should never have happened, at least not without Vigneron's blessing, but what's done is done.
Since it is now no longer Church property in any sense, the reality each week of Mass being offered there now comes into question.
Vigneron and his gay-friendly leadership in the archdiocese used to have some small modicum of cover when the property was Catholic, but now even that phony cover is evaporated.
There is absolutely no reason whatsoever the gay Mass should be allowed to happen there any longer.
The actions of Marygrove's president, Elizabeth Burns, of permitting Dignity Masses on campus screams that active homosexuals and lesbians need to be tolerated and accepted — the Mass will go on.
But that's not her call, exactly. True, she could end it by telling the Dignity group to go find another home. But she isn't going to do that.
However, Vigneron not only can stop this immediately by forbidding the Mass to be offered there, since the celebration of all liturgies in his archdiocese is under his control, but now given that the land and chapel that the weekly Mass is offered in no longer Catholic, he has a duty to stop it.
Truth is, he had a duty to put an end to this years ago, but now another layer has been added.
So now we have the case of the woman president of the newly constituted former Catholic college sold off for millions backing the gay Mass versus the archbishop who had the college sold right out from under him terrified of angering the homoheretic mob in the archdiocese.
The archbishop has a duty of care for the souls in this archdiocese. He was already made a fool by the old nuns who completely disregarded his authority when they sold the college. He has continued to be made a fool of by the homo-mob in his chancery and the Dignity group by allowing this to go for the 10 years of his tenure here.
So now, the question is: Will he continue to be made the fool or will these circumstances finally force him to act to end this near-sacrilegious weekly event where Church teaching is mocked in action week after week, where men and women who openly live lives opposed to Church teaching thumb their collective noses at the Church and carry on with the archbishop's tacit approval?
Well, now it's all out there, because the Mass is now occurring on non-Church property, the archbishop must give his direct approval for it. Or he must do what he should have done years ago and end it.
Let's see who wins: the archbishop or the president of the non-Catholic college, over the issue of Catholic Mass celebrating a life of sin.