Friday, April 3, 2009

Perseverance: St. Leo's Church - Columbus, OH

Closed yes ... but not really

St. Leo's Church in Columbus, OH. was closed by the Catholic Diocese of Columbus on July 1, 1999. However, that didn't stop a group of parishioners from taking over the building and keeping it open. They have created the St. Leo Preservation Society, a charitable organization dedicated to protecting and preserving the buildings of St. Leo Church and to further the charitable work of the parish. In addition to raising funds for the preservation of this wonderful building, they have created The St. Leo Parish Memorial Seminarians Endowment Fund. This fund provides financial support to seminarians. 

One of the goals in their mission is to "to educate the public on the importance of all faith communities and their buildings to a surrounding community."

St. Leo's Church | 221 Hanford Street | Columbus, OH 43206


  1. AMEN!! I LOVE seeing this kind of thing! More power to this group; and that Cleveland Preservation Society might want to take notice, because this is the sort of thing that will need to start happening in Cleveland ...

  2. This is what they are doing in Boston, where this same bishop closed their parishes. There are a handfull of churches holding the rosary 24/7 all while collecting funds to keep the church going. The diocese will not send the bulldozers while they are there. Yeah!
    Their love, and loyalty, for neighborhoods, homes and churches that they built keeps them going.

  3. Hi Chip -

    I had no clue that you had a blog and that you had our beautiful St. Leo Church on it! I found out when a man called me regarding fundraising and he said he had seen your blog.

    Chip, I feel so badly about these churches in Cleveland! I know that some had good attendance just as they did in Boston.

    Yes, our churches were built by our ancestors to be there forever, gifts to us, their progeny. They were gifts to God, as well. Do our gifts to God become unworthy of God? Who dares to make that call?

    Just as churches were destroyed or damaged in Europe by the wars, our own churches are being attacked and defiled - our forefathers' gifts to God are being defiled! And why? It is an attack against our faith, against the beliefs that were handed down since the time of Christ. There are those within our Catholic Church who do not wish us to practice our faith traditions and devotions. They strike at the very thing that gives our faith a home, a place in history.

    Why else are these churches being closed, defiled and torn down? I've learned a lot over these past 11 years of pain and torture. It is all about the money. Follow the money! And why is it so imperative to sell the soul of our Church for money? Because these dioceses are bankrupt (or almost) because of those who committed and hid sexual abuse against those that they should have elevated to the Heavens with the Truth that is Jesus Christ.

    Until these same bishops STOP DESTROYING CHURCHES and get on some sack cloth and ashes, beg forgiveness of their people, and OPEN the churches for Eucharistic Adoration asking their people to pray for them, their diocese and for good and holy vocations, their people will NOT trust them. If they would do the things I suggest, their funding will turn around, as will attendance and vocations.

    Chip, am I seeing that two of these churches that were closed were William Ginther's creations? More important now than ever to keep our beautiful St. Leo Church in Columbus since you and I believe that William Ginther was our architect, too.

    People - fight for your churches and fight for your patrimony - there are 22 Canon Laws for the protection of the patrimony of the Church. The dioceses are REQUIRED to return anything donated back to the person or person's family. They must make a good effort to contact people. This includes chalices, windows, statues, lamps, etc. If I were you, I would file suit - trafficking in stolen goods. File suit against those religious goods companies who "bought" the items for receiving stolen goods.

    Europe is full of beautiful churches built for God and protected by the state. How are we to have our history preserved if all our history is torn down before it even has a chance.

    Chip, you perform a great service in your blog. May God bless you and keep you! Saint Leo the Great, pray for us, and save us from the Huns!

    All for Jesus!
    Lori Mitchell

  4. Wow, this is awesome, I have been so upset about the closing of our inner city churches.

    We are currently attending Ressurection in New Albany, buit are considering making the drive to a downtown church, possibly Holy Cross or Holy Family so to better serve the poor.