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FEMA Section 106 Notices for Louisiana
Comment on "Public Notice Regarding Historic Review of the St. Frances Xavier Cabrini Church, 5500 Paris Avenue, New Orleans, Louisiana with linked PDF attachments "
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Name: Donna Childress
City: New Orleans LA
Comments: Regarding Cabrini Church--it is a sacred site and will always be for the parishioners that attended and loved the church (including myself)--it was obvious to us all that the building was outdated and needed constant maintenance. If the archdiocese has decided that the building is past saving, then it should be their decision. As Catholics, unfortunately we sometimes have to give up schools and churches that have become impossible to maintain--it is an fiscal fact of life.

As Americans we are blessed to have avenues to voice an opinion on the viability of an architectural treasure, and to preserve the ones that should be preserved---but no one who lives in the shadow of Cabrini and is seeing the continuing devastation to the people and the neighborhoods could, in good conscience, block the demolition since it is being replaced by another sacred institution dedicated to educating young men in the Catholic tradition.

Here in my neighborhood (Mirabeau Gardens) our neighborhood assn. was fortunate enough to be the recipients of the volunteer efforts of a large group of Notre Dame students during SugarBowl weekend. With the help of Catholic Charities and Beacon of Hope, the group participated in a cleanup effort---it was the first time I felt any positive energy in the neighborhood since Katrina---the good will these wonderful Notre Dame students and alumni brought to us (who were still living amid 10 foot weeds surrounding blighted houses), cannot be underestimated.

As many of you know Holy Cross and Notre Dame are connected by the founders of their order---the values embodied by these volunteers, who gave up their Sugar Bowl vacation time to help us---kindness, compassion, hard work, determination , comraderie, and a giving spirit---embody the teachings of Cabrini, Holy Cross. Notre Dame and all Catholic institutions. Needless to say the City of New Orleans has virturally ignored our neighborhood, so these volunteers were more welcome and appreciated than they will ever know.

For those of us living near Cabrini, the daily sight of the destroyed cross dangling from the steeple atop the blighted church, is more heart rending than one can bear----let's get on with the demolition and move onto a better day--when we actually have neighbors, stores, telephone lines, businesses, children laughing and playing again!!

My plea to the archdiocese would be this---preserve artifacts from the church, and continue the adoration chapel (with candles) if possible--there are too many people who will be very saddened with the loss of the church, even though we know it is the only thing that will get the neighborhood back on track--and God bless all who have to struggle with these monumental decisions.

Further to the subject---let's take down St. Bernard projects while we are at it and REALLY revive the whole area