To The Daily Sun,
This is an open letter to Bishop Libasci in objection to demolishing the St. Joseph’s Church:
“A generation goes, and a generation comes, but the earth remains forever.” (Ecc. 1:4)
We are caretakers of the earth, and that includes how we use the resources we have already built. No one can say what will become of a building after it has been built, but the optimal use of anything we build is that we use it. That the Catholic Church no longer has use for this building doesn’t mean another group of people can’t. Would you really rather destroy a building than see it put to a different use than its original intent?
I prefer to see people use this building for the greater glory of God, but supposing it turned into affordable housing, is that not sacred enough to keep over an empty lot? Suppose the building becomes a place where people eat meals together, would you still not spare the building of its destruction? Or if the artists and musicians of the city find use for it as a concert hall and artists gallery, would destruction still be worthier than restoration?
“So the men turned from there, and went towards Sodom, while Abraham remained standing before the Lord. Then Abraham came near and said, ‘Will you indeed sweep away the righteous with the wicked? Suppose there are fifty righteous within the city; will you then sweep away the place and not forgive it for the fifty righteous who are in it? Far be it from you to do such a thing, to slay the righteous with the wicked, so that the righteous fare as the wicked! Far be that from you! Shall not the Judge of all the earth do what is just?’ And the Lord said, ‘If I find at Sodom fifty righteous in the city, I will forgive the whole place for their sake.’” (Gen. 18:22-26)
May you please forgive the people of my city, who desire that this homage to our ancestors be left standing, so that a new generation of people may find within its walls a new purpose of congregating there.
“When we build, let us think that we build forever. Let it not be for present delight, nor for present use alone; let it be such work as our descendants will thank us for, and let us think, as we lay stone on stone, that a time is to come when those stones will be held sacred because our hands have touched them, and that men will say as they look upon the labor and wrought substance of them, See! this our fathers did for us.” — John Ruskin