Dec. 24th, 2005

matrixrefugee: the word 'refugee' in electric green with a background of green matrix code (Constantine)
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

"Christmas Church" Gets Early Present
More Than $170,000 Restored After It Was Improperly Transferred to
Administrator's Other Parish

BOSTON – December 22 – Parishioners at Holy Trinity Church in Boston's South
End learned this weekend that over $176,000 worth of funds that they had
given to Holy Trinity for its support were actually transferred, over the
last several years, to St. James Church in Chinatown. The funds were
returned only last week after an audit by the Chancellor of the Archdiocese
of Boston discovered the misappropriation.

In a December 15 letter to the secretary of the Holy Trinity Parish Council,
Chancellor David Smith disclosed, "Holy Trinity Parish transferred $176,390
to St. James Parish over the period of the audit. That amount was borrowed
today by St. James Parish and deposited to an existing account belonging to
Holy Trinity Parish." The amount is more than a year's worth of income and
more than 18% of its estimated income of $950,000 during the last nine years.

Since November 1, 1996, the two parishes have shared the same administrator,
Fr. Hugh H. O'Regan. The chancellor's letter was dated the same day that a
published report appeared in the South End News in which archdiocesan
spokesman Terrence Donilon claimed that the audit had cleared Fr. O'Regan of
sharing Holy Trinity's funds with St. James.

In May, Holy Trinity parishioners requested an independent audit of the
parish property and finances in part because they "fear[ed] that [Fr.
O'Regan] has merged the parishes in finance, if not in fact," because of his
frequent announcement at Holy Trinity of the collection totals and
activities at St. James, according to the audit request to Auxiliary Bishop
John Boles.

Holy Trinity parishioners' concerns about mismanagement of their parish were
intensified because of the then-imminent closure of their parish under the
Archdiocesan reconfiguration process. Parishioners feared that, because of
Fr. O'Regan's failure to file financial reports with the Archdiocese, that
the decision to close Holy Trinity was "made on incomplete or erroneous
data," continued their audit request. In late May, the parish's original
June 30 closure date was extended to December 15. On December 13, in
response to inquiries by members of the news media, Donilon stated that the
parish would not close on December 15. No closure date has been set; a
report in the South End News called the extension "indefinite." Ironically,
in July, Fr. O'Regan told Holy Trinity parishioners that they are to worship
at St. James should Holy Trinity close.

In response to parishioners' audit request, the chancellor's office
attempted to reconstruct Holy Trinity's finances from bank statements
beginning in 2000. On July 27, Chancellor Smith met with parishioners and
presented preliminary figures, which he admitted would only be estimates
because the proper financial reports had been filed for only one year.
Parishioners immediately challenged the figures based on their own
accounting of parish income announced in their bulletin. For example, the
parish's Trinity Club account showed a balance of $154,000 as of the date of
the audit. However, based on reported collection figures, the parishioners
stated that about $400,000 had been deposited in the account in the past
nine years. They noted that approximately $72,000 was used to replace the
church's heating plant. That left about $175,000 unaccounted for in the
report that the chancellor provided. Citing the need to investigate this
discrepancy, he asked for a copy of the parishioners' figures and committed
to revising the accounting by mid-August.

Parishioners soon concluded that the Archdiocese's audit was undertaken in
bad faith. They considered the process not to be a true audit as it did not
reconcile collected funds with deposits or determine the source of deposits
to its bank accounts. It also did not cover the entire nine years of Fr.
O'Regan's tenure. In addition, Chancellor Smith contacted parishioners
again only in late October, not in mid-August as he originally promised.
Therefore, in a December 10 letter, parishioners elected not to meet with
him to hear the final results of his audit, requesting instead that he mail
his findings to them. Chancellor Smith planned to share the full results of
the audit with the Archdiocese's Reconfiguration Oversight Committee in the
evening of December 15, claiming "the need for an outside review of our
work."

Meanwhile, plans for Christmas celebrations continue at Holy Trinity, whose
parishioners introduced many Christmas customs, such as the use of the
Christmas tree, into Boston in the mid-nineteenth century. A concert of
carols in German and other languages will begin at 11:30 PM on Christmas
Eve. Traditional High Mass in Latin, a sung Mass that includes Gregorian
chant, will follow immediately at midnight. At the beginning of this Mass,
a figure of the Infant Jesus will be borne to the crèche in a candlelight
procession as parishioners sing "Stille Nacht" in the darkened church. On
Christmas Day, Mass will be celebrated at 10 AM in English and German and at
noon in Latin.

Founded in 1844 to meet the pastoral needs of German worshippers, Holy
Trinity Church is the Archdiocese's oldest ethnic parish. For 161 years it
has cherished and preserved German Catholic traditions both for new
immigrants and for their descendants. It is the only German Catholic parish
in New England's eleven Catholic dioceses. In 1990 it expanded its role by
embracing the Archdiocese's only authorized traditional Latin Mass. The
combination of these two very compatible traditions has produced a faith
community that is much stronger than the sum of its parts. The parish has
also demonstrated its commitment to ongoing Christian charity by willingly
sharing its facilities with two social service agencies: the Cardinal
Medeiros Center day shelter for the homeless and the Bridge Over Troubled
Waters residence for at-risk youth.


Unfortunately, this press-release came before we found out that O'Regan the Wretch (No, I am not disrespecting a priest, I am calling a spade a spade and a very obnoxious human a very obnoxious human) has claimed the book-keeping mess was "an oversight" and thus the idiots in the Archdiocese are not going to be taking disciplinary action. Excuse me? $176,000 and change is not a book-keeping oversight, unless maybe you're Bill Gates (or the Merv). If I could get my hands on a copy of the Rite of Excommunication, I'd get a couple of strong guys to help me pin him down so we could do a quickie de-frocking/excommunication on the spot, ala John Constantine pinning Balthazar. We don't need a jerk like this running our parish, and I hope the folks at Holy Trinity will do a little civil disobedience and start giving O'Regan the cold shoulder and eventually the boot to the butt. I hope that the Vatican hears about this one and that God's Rottweiler sics the big dawgs on O'Regan's sorry arse.
matrixrefugee: the word 'refugee' in electric green with a background of green matrix code (Ho_Ho_Ho_Flood)
To make up for the bitchiness in the last post, I bring you something I've been hammering at for a week now, inspired by the GAFF thread "GAFF Christmas Carols". I bring you:

'The Twelve Days of Matrix Badfic' -- Cut for possible adult humor )
matrixrefugee: the word 'refugee' in electric green with a background of green matrix code (It's a Wonderful Life)
I'm still working on this year's fic (though I managed to write/type the ending of it). I didn't want you to go without something special to read tonight, so I dug up an unfinished "A.I." fanfiction, which I'd posted on the Yahoo! group last year. I have to admit, the idea is a little silly, and I'm a bit embarassed that I wrote it, since there's so many lazy Christmas fanfic writers who take some Christmas classic and just copy-paste the names of the characters from their fandom of choice into it (Case in point these really dumb "Matrix" version of "A Christmas Carol" with [pick one] either Agent Smith or the Merovingian as Ebeneezer Scrooge, that I've seen). But... I'm not so embarrassed to keep from posting it on my LJ.

Untitled 'A.I.: Artificial Intelligence' rewrite of 'It's a Wonderful Life' )

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