Consultation – Church of the Resurrection, Cavehill Road.
14th May 2022
Church of the Resurrection first opened in 1980. It served as a focal point for Catholic families in the homes around the Upper Cavehill area.
In 2008 the Church, following consultation, was permanently closed due to continuing leakage from the roof, with the cost of repair beyond the resources of the parish at the time. At that time, we were some £2 million (pounds) in debt and with a new church in Holy Family and the church of St Therese in use, the decision was made to permanently close the Church of Resurrection while maintaining the adjacent Parish Centre. In 2008, and again in 2013, there were parish wide consultations outlining options for the future of the Church building, ranging from (i) Doing nothing (ii) Considering the cost of repairing and refurbishing the building and (iii) through to building a new structure.
The loyalty to the church building and affection to the strength of the bond of church community built around it over the years was clear and evident. There were a number of suggestions from parishioners put forward both at a public meeting and by individual responses over the time. An investigation into the various options was undertaken and several update letters to the parishioners issued over the years, with the Pastoral Council deeply involved in discussion and collaboration with the Finance committee over the subsequent years.
As time has moved on, the state of the church building has deteriorated, with the original leakage exacerbated by continuous vandalism and theft despite the security measures in place at a considerable cost to the parish.
We also must face the unfortunate reality that there has been an on-going decline in the active church community, and this been further exacerbated over the past two years by the Covid pandemic.
In addition, there is evidently a shortfall in the number of priests to serve the parish and people involved within the parish. The present active churches of Holy Family and St Therese have catered for the number of parishioners over the years and indeed have also entailed the reduction in the number of masses offered as more seating became available in each mass. In the year 2020/2021 the income of the parish reduced by £100,000 (pounds). The safety of the building is also to be taken into consideration as well as its general outlook in the area.
Recent pressure has come from the insurance company due to safety concerns. The insurers have told us that if there is no progress on demolition, they state they will require the site to be secured and constantly monitored with a maintenance schedule to be undertaken. This will be at a significant cost to the parish.
Hence the proposal to be considered is the following:
“Proposal to demolish the permanently closed Church of the Resurrection”.
It is proposed that when the demolition phase is completed, further communication will be made with parishioners on what is to be proposed for the Church grounds.
Please respond by email firstname.lastname@example.org or by post/hand-deliver to the parish office before 12noon Monday 30th May 2022 using the response sheet provided.
Any decision at parish level will require the approval of the Bishop, who will seek the consent of the College of Consultors and Diocesan Trustees.
Holy Family Parish Finance Committee
CLICK ON THE LINK BELOW TO OPEN THE RESPONSE SHEET