• Report: #641972
Complaint Review:

St. Louis King of France Catholic Church

  • Submitted: Sat, September 18, 2010
  • Updated: Sun, September 19, 2010

  • Reported By: Concerned Citizen — Elgin Illinois U.S.A.
St. Louis King of France Catholic Church
2114 Saint Joseph Boulevard Austin, Texas United States of America
  • Phone: 512-454-0384
  • Web:
  • Category: Churches

St. Louis King of France Catholic Church The Inquisition Lives --Catholics Rent Space to Jews for Worship, then Renege Austin, Texas

*Consumer Comment: Shouldn't Yom Kippur Services Be Held in a Jewish Place of Worship?

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What sort of Jews rent space for Yom Kippur worship -- the most solemn day in the Jewish Religion, the Highest of High Holy Days -- in a CATHOLIC CHURCH. Apparently not the kind who remember the Inquisition where Jews were thrown out of their homes and the country, forced to convert and were tortured, burned alive and executed in 1492.

It would make more sense to rent space in a mosque or a Southern Baptist Church.

The Inquisition started in SPAIN.

So much for Austin's reputation for TOLERANCE, DIVERSITY AND LOVE.

Such a LIBERAL City..but there is still plenty of HATE and INTOLERANCE from the old Southern Baptist Theocracy days.

I wouldn't have believed it if I had not read it myself in the Austin American Statesman newspaper dated Sept.17, 2010 on Friday.

Story follows:

AUSTIN - religion

Rabbi's Ties to Planned Parenthood cited

By Joshunda Sanders
American Statesman Staff

   St. Louis King of France Catholic Church rescinded its invitation for the Jewish Congregation Temple Beth Shalom to hold Yom Kippur Services at the Burnet Road church this weekend amid protests from Catholics and abortion opponents that Rabbi Alan Freedman is a board member of Planned Parenthood Texas Capital Region..

   "The Diocese of Austin has directed that the services of Yom Kippur for the congregation of Temple Beth Shalom not take place as planned at St. Louis Catholic Church, "diocese spokesman Christian Gonzalez said in a statement.                       'Bishop Joe Vasquez is aware of recent press and Internet reports that have questioned the inappropriateness of the invitation having been extended to Temple Beth Shalom by Father Larry Covington, pastor of St. Louis.

   "In view of the fact that Rabbi Alan Freedman is a member of the Board of Planned Parenthood, and questions about the suitability of a Catholic sanctuary by a non-Christian community, Father Covington has determined, in consultation with  Bishop Vasquez to withdraw the invitation."

   Beth Shalom, which has about 1,200 members, has held High Holy Day Services at the more spacious Catholic Church for the past two years because special services attract more members to its synagogue. Yom Kippur, the holiest day of the year on the Jewish calendar begins at sunset today and ends Saturday afternoon.Freedman said about 900 to attend Beth Shalom's services, which have been moved to a gym in the Jewish Community Center on the Dell Jewish Community Campus in North Austin.

  Several online and cable television reports from Catholic and anti-abortion sources reported that the Austin parish was allowing an abortion-rights activist to lead services in the church. Earlier this week, the diocese pointed out that Vasquez, who was installed to lead the diocese of Austin earlier this year, might not have been aware of Freedman's affiliation with Planned Parenthood.

Vazquez " was only recently made aware of who Rabbi Alan Freedman is and did not know of his affiliations until a few days ado,"Monsignor Mike Sis, vicar general of the Diocese of Austin, said in a written statement.

Freedman wrote a letter informing his congregation of the last-minute change: "Over the past 24 hours, the traditional Catholic Church press on the internet and on Catholic cable television has made a substantial issuer of the fact that I am serving on the local Board of Planned Parenthood and as the chair of its Clergy Advisory Group. St.Louis Catholic Church and the Catholic Diocese of Austin have received protests from literally throughout the world about my leading services in a Catholic church.
"As the protests have mounted today, Father Larry and I discussed the continued viability of our presence at St, Louis from the standpoint of both congregations," Freedman wrote."It was agreed in the best interests of both communities that we not hold services at St. Louis this Yom Kippur."

Freedman said Thursday,"I think that it's an unfortunate development at this late hour."

With less than 24 hours to change the location of the services, members of Beth Shalom were busy changing their plans Thursday, Jay Rubin, the chief executive officer of the Jewish Community Association of Austin, said employees of the Dell Jewish Community Campus went to the Catholic Church to pick up hundreds of Jewish prayer books, name tags and even the podium Freedman was to speak from.

"It's unfortunate that this had to happen, and that it happened this close to the holiday,"Rubin said. But when volunteers and campus workers drove to the church Thursday afternoon, he said church staff members were helping to load the cars with Jewish decorations to take them to the Hart Lane facility.

Longtime St. Louis parishioners such as John O'Sullivan, 80, said there were other issues with  the Jewish services in the Catholic Church. He said he had a problem with the way the church was redecorated for Jewish services.

"Our stations of the cross were covered for the events and were were unhappy about that," O'Sullivan said. Other parishioners had concerns about relegated to a smaller chapel during High Holy Day services, he said.

The incident was reminiscent of the cancellation of an interfaith service on 2007 that has been scheduled at the Quarries, a recreational facility owned by Hyde Park Baptist Church. Local Muslims rented a gym at the Quarries to host the Austin Area Interreligious Ministries annual Thanksgiving Service but months after reservations were made, Hyde Park leaders decided a few days before the service that the church could not allow Muslim prayer and the promotion of non-Christian religions on its property.

THOSE SERVICES WERE THEN MOVED TO THE REFORMED JEWISH CONGREGATION of BETH ISRAEL --to an overflowing crowd and no incidents took place.



This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 09/18/2010 05:01 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/reports/st-louis-king-of-france-catholic-church/austin-texas-78757/st-louis-king-of-france-catholic-church-the-inquisition-lives-catholics-rent-space-to-641972. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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#1 Consumer Comment

Shouldn't Yom Kippur Services Be Held in a Jewish Place of Worship?

AUTHOR: Joe - (U.S.A.)

I have to ask why this Jewish Congregation didn't go to the Dell JEWISH Community Center in the first place or to another Congregation?

I have visited Catholic church myself. But a JEW is still a JEW and a CATHOLIC is still a CATHOLIC.

And when you attend religious services in a Catholic Church you will see the sign of the Cross and some rather graphic imagery, stations of the Cross where Jesus allegedly walked on the way to His death and eternal life, and lots of crucifixes. You will see the Baptismal font, Holy Water at the doors and you will see the pulpit and you will see a LOT of Catholic imagery because it is a CATHOLIC CHURCH. This is what Catholics believe.

If  you have to cover it all up then, DO NOT HAVE RELIGIOUS SERVICES IN A CATHOLIC CHURCH.

We had some  empty seats upstairs where I was with my spouse and we would loved to have had members of Congregation of Beth Shalom  sit with us at our Yom Kippur Service.

We need to take care of our own.

This is not exactly an ecumenical  "show and tell -- let's go stare at the Jews or the Catholics for entertainment "--kind of thing.

Yom Kippur is supposed to mean something and  gets us right with God for the rest of our New Year.

I like  my Catholic friends. I want them to have their Holy Days without me intruding myself into their place of worship and vice versa. If I am invited for regular worship, that is OK but for High Holy Days, I want to be around others like me so we can experience them the way we have traditionally in Judaism.  Remember, that we have had Jews who died for our faith!

I will have to side with Bishop Vasquez on this one. Catholics worship with Catholics and Jews worship with Jews,especially on important Holy Days such as this one.

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