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Archdiocese proposes closing dozens of churches in Baltimore

Archdiocese of Baltimore proposes closing dozens of churches
Archdiocese of Baltimore proposes closing dozens of churches 00:44

BALTIMORE - The Archdiocese of Baltimore is proposing to close dozens of churches in the city, according to our media partner at The Baltimore Banner.

The Archdiocese released a plan Sunday, which officials say is the result of two years of consideration. The plan would cut 40 of its 61 parishes, resulting in the closure of several historic landmarks and once-thriving worship sites.

The Archdiocese cited maintenance costs of aging churches, low mass attendance and "multiple unmet opportunities to better serve the needs of the broader community" as reasons for this proposal.

Archbishop William E. Lori will hold two public listening sessions on the proposed plan at the end of the month with a final decision expected in June.

The plan, called Seek the City to Come, began in September 2022 in response to dramatically falling participation, and officials say it was not related to its bankruptcy case filed last fall, according to the Banner.

The Archdiocese filed Chapter 11 bankruptcy in September ahead of a new law that went into effect in October. The Child Victims Act eliminated the statute of limitations in child sexual abuse claims.

An Attorney General report last year identified more than 160 clergy and other church staff accused of abusing more than 600 victims.

St. Benedict in Southwest Baltimore closed last November following an allegation of sexual abuse against a priest.  

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