"A new church - to build or not to build?"
That is the question asked by the headline on the front page of the 9/20/2007 parish edition of the diocesan paper, the Monitor. Parishioner and RE Director Linda Dix writes:
On Wednesday evening, Nov. 7 at 7 p.m., Father Damien has invited Father Richard S. Vosko, noted national design consultant for worship environments to Our Lady's Parish. Presently, we have issues of overcrowding and the challenge of space. This much is certainly true, the Church was built 125 years ago and has increased dramatically in size.
Is building a new church an option? Not in the current location, nor can any extensive renovations be done because the church properties (church, rectory, two office buildings, if not the school and former convent) are historical landmarks. The local historical society is extremely strict.
To help with the decision-making process, all parishioners are invited to explore this question with Father Richard Vosko and Father Damien at the meeting on Nov. 7. Father Vosko will discuss what a Catholic Church should look like through the lens of Vatican Council II. Father correlated recent church designs and buildings to the Documents of Vatican Council II, the newly revised General Instruction on the Roman Missal, and the recent USCCB document "Built with Living Stones."
Father Vosko was the liturgical designer and consultant at the newly-built St Theresa Church in Little Egg Harbor, Ocean County. He brings a wealth of information, experience, and theology with him as he comes to explore questions with us. Please make every effort to participate!
While it is true that OLGC may need a new Church, the involvement of the highly controversial Fr Vosko raises many concerns. Fr Vosko has a reputation for pushing through an agenda (presumably both his and that of whomever hired him) that is hostile to the theology of the the Church and the Eucharist. While meetings are set up to "involve parishioners in the decision making process", the facts suggest that conclusions are reached before the parishioners have any input.