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December 26, 2012
13 Reasons 2012 Was Cleveland's Best Year Ever
It was grand, it's over, and it's worth celebrating
by Eric Sandy and Vince Grzegorek
11. We Won an Unprecedented Appeal Over the Vatican and Got Our Churches Reopened
After Bishop Richard Lennon closed 50 churches in the Cleveland Catholic Diocese
in 2009 and 2010, parishioners built up a strong case against his
actions in papal court, which is more like Judge Joe Brown than you'd
With the help of strong representation and a virulent
Cleveland base, the Vatican overturned the initial decision and sent
over a monumental decree to Lennon.
In April of this year, the
bishop was forced to concede the appeal - as half-assedly as possible -
and eventually agreed to reopen 12 parishes.
Lennon stalled the matter as long as he
could, stoking the ire of parishioners across the region. In the end,
however, doors were opened and Mass was celebrated once again and Lennon
was left to do something other than f*** with Cleveland's faithful.
was a joyous moment (or long, drawn-out series of moments) for
Cleveland Catholics. And like our city's other forays into spirituality
-- like shotgunning PBRs in the Muni Lot or getting high at Blossom --
the Vatican appeal shows how our region is pushing the envelope across
Boston activist Peter Borre called the appeal
"unprecedented for Catholic America." And he was right. This tidal wave
of support for the common parishioner has rarely been seen.
*** there has been an edit, in print there were three letters in place