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Vatican Upholds Diocesan Decision to Close St. Adalbert Church

By Mark Scott

Buffalo, NY – The Catholic Diocese of Buffalo says the Vatican has denied an appeal from parishioners from Buffalo's St. Adalbert Church who are trying to prevent the closing of the historic church.

A written decree from the Vatican was received by the diocese on Monday that upholds the decision of Bishop Edward Kmiec to close St. Adalbert. The closing was announced last July but was put on hold pending the outcome of the Vatican appeal. It was the last hope for the 121-year-old East Side parish.

Diocesan spokesman Kevin Keenan says St. Adalbert will be merging with nearby St. John Kanty Church.

An organizer of the effort to keep St. Adalbert open did not return our phone call for comment.

Keenan says diocesan officials hope the denial of this appeal will influence parishioners from other churches targeted for closing to drop their planned Vatican appeals.

The process known as the "Journey in Faith and Grace" has already resulted in the closings of more than 60 churches throughout the eight counties of Western New York with more announcements to be made in the coming months.

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