The Vatican is getting the final say when it comes to the fate of St. Ann Church in Buffalo.
The Apostolic Signatura, the Vatican's highest judicial court, has ruled Bishop Malone was within his rights to issue a decree in August of 2013, closing the 130 year-old church.
The back and forth battle over St. Ann has been waging now for more than four years, with the group, Friends of St. Ann originally filing an appeal with the Vatican Congregation for the clergy to keep the church open.
"Now that the Vatican has ruled, the decision to close the church is final," said Bishop Malone. "We will do all that we can, within the confines of safety and feasibility, to remove all sacred and artistically significant artifacts. We hope to save the most significant elements of the Shrine of St. Ann for relocation. We will announce its new home in the dioceses in the coming months."
The church will now go up for sale. Any potential buyers should contact the Diocese of Buffalo Buildings & Properties Department at 716-847-8750.
St. Ann Parish merged with SS. Columba-Brigid in September of 2007.
The parish opened in 1858. The current church was built in 1886,