Thursday, December 18, 2014

Nassau Street between Gold and Duffield Sts.

Around December 10, 2014, the Brooklyn Daily Eagle website carried a story "Bidding War for Concord Street Development Site."  However, several paragraphs down, the account veers to 200 Nassau Street, running from Duffield Street to Gold Street on the south side of Nassau St.  This is a two-story residence of some sort, apparently built in the 1950's or 1960's, perhaps a convent.  At any rate, according to this article, in 2012 the Diocese of Brooklyn transferred this property to a non-profit affiliate, Rocklyn Ecclesiastical Corp.  Rocklyn has leased the property to a developer to enlarge for a 49-year term.
The same developer has leased diocesan properties at 17 and 21 Monitor Street (St. Cecilia), 96 Dupont Street (Sts. Cyril and Methodius?), and 81 Ten Eyck Street (St. Mary, Maujer St.).
Apparently, there are at least two versions of Rocklyn, Rocklyn Ecclesiastical Corp. and Rocklyn Asset Corporation. The word Rocklyn may derive from Rockville Centre and Brooklyn.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

More about high schools

The post below this one is more important.  I should have pointed out that students who take the TACHS examination can request that the results be sent to any three Catholic high schools, even in other boroughs.  The nine Catholic high schools in Brooklyn have approximate admissions of 1,225 students, while the nine Catholic high schools in Queens have admissions of 2,190.  I wonder how many youngsters in these boroughs will take the exam in November.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Admissions Test for Brooklyn Catholic High Schools

It is early September, 2014, and the important Student Handbook for taking the entrance examination to Catholic High Schools (for admission in September, 2015) has been released at 

Look for the word "Handbook" on in the left column on that page.  In this extensive handbook, among the many pageas of information, I find page 25 most helpful because it tells the approximate admissions number and tuition for each Catholic high school in Brooklyn.  These pages also list the Open House dates.  Some charts in this Handbook are turned vertical.  I suggest that these pages be printed in portrait, so you can read the printed page more easily.  

The nine Catholic high schools in the borough of Brooklyn are listed below, with approximate enrollment figures:

Saint Saviour High School, Park Slope, enrollment about 240 girls.
St. Joseph High School, Willoughby and Bridge Sts., enrollment about 300 girls.
Nazareth Regional High School, East Flatbush, enrollment about 250 students.
Fontbonne Hall Academy, Bay Ridge, enrollment about 485 girls.
Bishop Kearney High School, Borough Park, enrollment about 450 girls.
St. Edmund Prep, Midwood, enrollment about 750 students.
Bishop Loughlin High School, Clinton Hill / Fort Greene.
Xaverian High School, Bay Ridge, enrollment about 1,100 in grades 6-12.  On the website, note the "rumor" about Xaverian becoming coed on the high school level.
Cristo Rey Brooklyn High School, 710 East 37th Street, East Flatbush.  Please read the website, as Cristo Rey is a very different type of Catholic high school.
It would be commendable if each school reported on its website the grade-by-grade enrollment. The approximate admissions total 1,225 for Brooklyn.
Each school lists an Open House date before the November 8th exam.  Also, note that there is a two-hour session at 180 Remsen Street (near Borough Hall) 6 p.m. Monday, September 22nd, for learning about the high schools.

Saturday, June 21, 2014

St. Nicholas Ukrainian church

In my walks about Park Slope, I neglected a church of the Ukrainian Catholic Diocese of Stamford, St. Nicholas at 256 19th Street, Brooklyn, NY 11215.  The onion-domed church with a high stoop is on the south side of 19th Street between Fifth and Sixth Avenues. The parish appears to have been established in 1911.

Saturday, April 19, 2014

North Brooklyn Catholic

The Greenpoint News has run a story on the coordinated efforts of fifteen Catholic churches of Greenpoint and Williamsburg.  The geographic boundaries of parishes used to be much more important in our cities, so it is encouraging to see this combined work. The article link is below:
Please also see

I note 42 celebrations of Sunday worship on a chronological list.  Years ago, I saw the same sort of coordination in Avila, Spain, to help people find a Sunday Mass at a certain hour, the complete list of all celebrations posted on a placard outside each church.
Also, please see the active Facebook page, "North Brooklyn Catholic," linked HERE.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Greenpoint schools into apartments

Two articles have appeared concerning the lease of Catholic schools in Greenpoint to developers who are turning them into apartments.  These two articles are of interest:
From the Brooklyn Daily Eagle of 4.16.2014, "Rescue Me: Shuttered Greenpoint Catholic Schools are Resurrected as Apartment Houses."
from Curbed NY of 4.17.2014, "Losing Our Religion: Shuttered Greenpoint Catholic Schools to Become Housing."
These news stories involve St. Cecilia and the parish of Sts. Cyril and Methodius.
What is revealing is the account of corporations-behind-corporations.  Also, I note that St. Cecilia's school may still be owned by the diocese or parish but merely leased for 49 years.  I wonder whether Rocklyn Asset Corporation is involved in this deal.
Also, please see this blog's posts on the two parishes:
St. Cecilia
and Sts. Cyril and Methodius.
The church of Sts. Cyril and Methodius are east of Manhattan Avenue.  The former school is west of Manhattan Avenue.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Bishop Ford HS to close

Sad to report, but Bishop Ford HS, with an enrollment of 499, will close in June.  Please see the announcement here.
My post and photos from 2009 are below.

Bishop Ford Central Catholic High School is located at 500 Nineteenth Street, Brooklyn NY 11215, telephone 718-360-2500. Its website is linked here.

The principal entrances of the school are along Nineteenth Street, indicated by the activities entrance on the right, and the academic entrance underneath the cross, as shown in the second photo.
A helpful correspondent has explained: "The Franciscan Brothers Residence was the top floor of Bishop Ford. They now occupy a smaller section with their own chapel on their floor. The other space is used for the school ."
The Prospect Expressway (NY 27) parallels Nineteenth Street. When the bishop of Brooklyn announced the construction of several diocesan high schools about 1960, suitable property was scarce. In this case, a streetcar barn took up the entire block now used by Bishop Ford High School. These streets border the school: on the northeast, Fifteenth Street, seen above; on the southeast Tenth Avenue, marked in the above photo by the tall transmitter of the diocesan television station; on the southwest Twentieth Street and Green-Wood Cemetery, and on the northwest Prospect Park West.


Saturday, March 22, 2014

St. John the Baptist, Lewis Avenue

Please see the link here to a 2011 article. The parish is alive; priests and people worship and celebrate the Eucharist. I have not yet visited this church.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

3.21.2014 Symposium on Patrick Keely

I am grateful to a correspondent who has directed me to this notice of a symposium on March 21, 2014:

For the work of Mr. Keely, please see Keely on the label list to the right.  Also, see this 1896 obituary posted by the historian Patrick McNamara here.

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Book: Sacred Havens of Brooklyn

Congratulations to author Terri Cook for her extraordinary book, "Sacred Havens of Brooklyn," published by The History Press in 2013.  As she includes synagogues, mosques, and Christian churches of many denominations, her 224-page book results from much more investigation, observation, and walking than I have done for this blog.
At least 72 Catholic parishes are included, often with interesting facts that I did not learn from my other readings. She has divided Brooklyn into three parts, and then into neighborhood chapters, with the result that the Catholic parishes are presented in the context of neighborhood ethnicity and other houses of worship.
The book offers a wealth of descriptive text. You may discover errors, and the phrasing or vocabulary is sometimes inexact.  For example, she uses the word "sanctuary" for the church interior, a Protestant usage, where that word in Catholic usage describes only the limited space near the altar, ambo, and tabernacle, once "inside the communion rail."
The author has visited the interior of almost all the churches she describes, whereas I have turned away from locked doors.  Therefore, her book is more descriptive than this blog.
Google's Blogger allows revisions, something difficult in a printed book.  I am going to have to mine this volume for possible edits of my descriptions of parishes.

Friday, March 7, 2014

Continental Army Plaza, Williamsburg

A reader has asked:
There's a Catholic church that holds bilingual services outdoors in the Continental Army Plaza in South Williamsburg during the summer. Do you know which church this is?
There are several Catholic parishes nearby.  If anyone knows details of these summertime services, please answer by clicking on Comments above.  
Thank you.
Continental Army Plaza is on the north side of Williamsburg Bridge Plaza.  A description is here.

Saturday, February 15, 2014

St. Jerome Academy to close in June

The Brooklyn Tablet, in an article dated 2.12.2014, announces the closure this June of St. Jerome Academy, East 29th Street, near Newkirk and Nostrand Avenues.  The article states that 235 students are enrolled, and that the closure results from monetary deficits in operation and repairs.

Pope John Paul II Family Academy to close

See this Tablet article dated 2.12.2014 about the closing of Pope John Paul II Family Academy (in the former St. Barbara School) this June.  Lack of funds is given as the reason.  Please recall that this academy was funded by an anonymous donor.  At the time of the schools initiation, there was some report of the donor's insistence of family participation in Sunday Mass.  The Tablet article does not indicate the enrollment or the grades that are being taught, nor does it mention staffing. A rooftop photo on the academy's website shows about 110 students and 15 staff, including two or three religious Sisters, perhaps from Poland.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

From Ridgewood to Albany

The Troy Record of 2.11.2014 reports that Msgr. Edward Scharfenberger of the diocese of Brooklyn has been named the next bishop of Albany.  The article is linked here.
Contrasting the two dioceses, I note that the diocese of Albany includes more than thirteen counties, Brooklyn two. According to  Brooklyn has one priest for approximately each 2,200 Catholics, Albany one priest for 1,360.
The Tablet article of February 12, 2014, linked here, explains that Msgr. Scharfenberger was baptized at St. Aloysius church and educated at Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal School, both in Queens.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

August, 2013, changes in schools

This post is stale news because I did not notice a diocesan summary dated August, 2013.  In transforming elementary schools into quasi-independent Catholic academies, the diocese announced these changes:
St. Patrick School, Bay Ridge or Fort Hamilton, is now a Catholic Academy.  Please see the website here.
St. Peter Catholic Academy is the new name of  St. Mary Mother of Jesus - St. Frances Cabrini Academy, 23rd Avenue, Bensonhurst. For more description, also see this post.
St. Anselm Catholic Academy is the new name of St. Anselm's parish school, 83rd Street, Bay Ridge.
St. Francis Xavier Catholic Academy is the new name of St. Francis Xavier parish school, Park Slope.
St. Jerome Catholic Academy is the new name of St. Jerome parish school, Flatbush.
Our Lady of Trust Catholic Academy now has one campus, at St. Jude's, Canarsie Road.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

A free ebook from 1871

Fortunately, I encountered this title during a Google search: "A brief historical Sketch of the Catholic Church on Long Island," by Patrick Mulrenan, 1871.  The link is here.
Recall that Long Island includes Brooklyn, Queens, and everywhere to Montauk Point.  At that time, the diocese of Brooklyn included the entire island.  What is now Nassau County was part of Queens County, and Brooklyn was a City.  
At the top left of the page at the above link, you will see a red button "Ebook Free."  Yes, because the copyright has expired, Google can give you without charge what it scanned from the Harvard University library.  Before you download, consider where you want to read this book, on your computer or on a tablet, because it will download only to the device that fetches it. 
Mulrenan's book is a valuable snapshot of the Diocese of Brooklyn and its parishes and good works, as observed in 1871.  You may use the find tool to locate the parish, neighborhood, or person that is your particular interest.  In general, histories of dioceses focus on the bishops more than on the parishes, even when they attempt to write from the ground up.  The book, nevertheless, is a treasury of the growth of the church on our island.  Highly recommended.  I see copies for sale in the used book market also.