Saturday, February 20, 2021

Big sale of property, St. John the Baptist

St. John's on Lewis Avenue is a property I have not explored, though it is important in the history of the diocese of Brooklyn. Today, the Commercial Observer disclosed the sale of what the buyers call 800 Willoughby Avenue. That is the north transept of the Church of  St. John the Baptist. For decades, the stained glass windows have been boarded up (against rock-tossing vandals), and I am told that a cinder-block bunker was installed in the vast nave as a chapel of worship. Two hundred four apartments will be built in the church. A gym and a two-story garage will be built. A 2013 video linked HERE gives a good idea of the areas outside the "box" with a few glimpses of the active and intimate worship chapel.


In the ten days since I first posted this I have not found any corroboration of the article in the Commercial Observer. There is a chance that the financial sources don't add up to the amount needed for the deal, or some other obstacle has blocked it. Edit 3.3.2021.


The article does not disclose how much of the church property has or will be bought. The greatest extent seems to be a half-block, with Lewis Avenue on the west end, Willoughby Avenue on the north, and Hart Street on the south. Two years ago (looking at Google Street View), the entrance was a gate on the north side of Hart Street. Now, the directions for weekday Mass instruct people to enter the Daily Mass chapel from Willoughby Avenue. 


St. John's College was long here until it moved to Union Turnpike, Jamaica. Whether any property on either side of Lewis Avenue is owned by the Congregation of the Mission (Vincentian Fathers) is not explained. The article reads as if the seller is the parish of St. John the Baptist.


The parish merged with that of Our Lady of Good Counsel, which still has a rectory and a maintained smaller church.  The merged parish has a up-to-date website HERE showing three Sunday Masses at St. John the Baptist and two at Our Lady of Good Counsel.

I may have to edit this report as I learn more.

Tuesday, February 2, 2021

  Sad to relate, St. Agnes Academic HS, College Point, Queens will close.

Sunday, January 17, 2021

Parish boundaries map in Boston

I am posting this link on my Brooklyn blog because it attracts the most viewers and comments. My other blogs are BronxCatholic and Nassau County Catholic.

The archdiocese of Boston has helped genealogists in two ways: a new map of parish boundaries and a treasure of sacramental archives. Please see this Boston Pilot article for the two links. I hope more dioceses imitate the offering.

Wednesday, December 16, 2020

San Damiano Mission, Greenpoint


IMPORTANT NOTE: On December 8, 2020, Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio reopened Holy Family church in Greenpoint under an administrator from the Shalom Catholic Community, a group of Brazilian roots. Please see the article in the Brooklyn Tablet linked HERE.
This parish was established in 1905, and the cornerstone of the church above reads 1911. It seems that Slovak Franciscan Friars cared for the faithful here during the parish's early era. 
When I took the above photo about 5:15 p.m. on a weekday in 2008, many cyclists seemed to be heading home on an established fast bike lane, unlike the worse traffic of parallel Manhattan Avenue.  The church is on North 15th Street at Nassau Avenue.
In 2011, the bishop of Brooklyn merged this parish with the parish of St. Anthony of Padua, which earlier had absorbed the parish of St. Alphonsus.  Since early 2015, it is San Damiano Mission.

Above, the rectory at 21 Nassau Avenue.

The parish school, which closed in 1970, is now a day care center operated by the diocesan Catholic Charities.

Sunday, November 22, 2020

Brooklyn Jesuit Prep

The website of America magazine now includes an article on the status of Brooklyn Jesuit Prep within the St. Vincent Ferrer parish school, 925 East 37th Street, Flatbush. Please see the article HERE.


Recently (when?) Brooklyn Jesuit Prep left St. Teresa Parish and moved to Flatbush.

Monday, August 24, 2020

Registration has begun for the Test for Acceptance to Catholic High Schools

 This notice addresses the eighth grade students who hope to begin attendance at a Catholic High School in September, 2021. The time for registration has begun. For more information, please see this handbook, which might be worth printing.

This entrance exam now includes Catholic High Schools on Long Island, twelve counties in total:

Brooklyn,  Bronx, Manhattan, Staten Island, Queens, Nassau, Suffolk, Westchester, Putnam, Dutchess, Rockland, and Orange. There are no Catholic high schools in Sullivan or Ulster counties. I know of one Catholic High School that requires a separate exam, namely all-boys Regis High School in Manhattan. Because the school listings are on landscape pages, I suggest that you print the lists of the counties that interest you.

Tuesday, July 14, 2020

Twenty-five Catholic elementary schools open in the borough of Brooklyn

Recent news articles about the sudden closure of parish elementary schools in New York City tell only part of the story. Below is my attempt to list geographically the 25 Catholic elementary schools in the borough of Brooklyn.
Parish schools and Catholic academies north of Atlantic Ave.:
St. Stanislaus Kostka, Newell St., Greenpoint.
St. Brigid - St.Frances Cabrini Catholic Academy, Grove St. and St. Nicholas Ave., Bushwick.
Blessed Sacrament, Euclid Ave., Cypress Hills.
Brooklyn Jesuit Prep, grades 5-8, Sterling Place.
Schools south of Atlantic Ave. and north of Church Ave.
Salve Regina, Jerome St., East New York.
St. Saviour, Eighth Ave., Park Slope.
St. Joseph the Worker, Prospect Park West, Windsor Terrace.
St. Francis of Assisi, Lincoln Road and Nostrand Ave.
Schools south of Church Avenue:
St. Catherine of Genoa - St. Therese of Lisieux, Avenue D, East Flatbush.
St. Mark, East 19 St., Sheepshead Bay.
St. Edmund, Avenue T., Sheepshead Bay.
Midwood Catholic Academy, Hendrickson St., Flatlands.
St. Bernard, near Mill Basin and Bergen Beach.
Good Shepherd, Avenue S, MarinePark. 
Our Lady of Trust, Canarsie
St. Athanasius, 61 St and Bay Parkway, Bensonhurst.
Our Lady of Grace, Avenue W, Gravesend.
St. Peter, 23rd Ave., Bensonhurst.
St. Ephrem, 74th St., Dyker Heights.
St. Bernadette, 83rd St., Dyker Heights.
Our Lady of Perpetual Help, 6 Ave. and 60 St., Sunset Park
Holy Angels, 74th St. and 4th Ave., Bay Ridge.
Bay Ridge Catholic, 83rd St. and 4th Ave.
Visitation Academy (Girls), 8902 Ridge Blvd., Bay Ridge.
St. Patrick, 99th St. and 4th Ave., Bay Ridge.