In the long story of St Stanislaus Kostka Church versus the archdiocese, there must be some parable in all this. Or maybe a dozen. Yet another chapter is written with a Missouri state judge ruling in favor of the breakaway parish. The new archbishop has inherited a fine mess. But Robert Carlson seems prepared to go to the top, and he doesn’t mean the Apostolic Signatura:
… all the way to the Supreme Court if necessary.
In his defense, Archbishop Carlson has bent over backwards to be conciliatory to the parish. But money and power wound deeply, and those wounds appear not easily healed. I doubt a bishop, backed by John Roberts and company, can win back the lost souls, if indeed that is what they are. The best they can do is get a shell of a building, and money to pay the legal fees.
But it does seem curious that the archdiocese is complaining about a secular court’s ruling. They were the ones who asked for such a ruling by taking this case to court, were they not? The secular courts will rule on the legality of the corporation documents. They don’t care about what the Vatican says about the theology. The bottom line is that for the foreseeable future, the material assets are untouchable. And the St Louis episcopal ministry has long ago lost a grasp on the spiritual. It all stings, I’m sure. It’s a darned embarrassment. But I don’t see what is to be accomplished by heading to higher secular courts. Except perhaps a pyrrhic victory.
The pastor of St Stans:
“We’re walking on clouds right now,” said Mr. Bozek, who led a celebratory service on Thursday evening that featured readings from Exodus, which gives an account of Jews leaving Egypt for the Promised Land. “The divine finger was in all of this, so it’s a natural reaction to say: ‘Let’s pray. Let’s give thanks to God for all of this.’ ”