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Cathedral Battle

June 09, 1996

Re "Battle Over Cathedral's Fate Intensifies," June 4:

What an irony that a bishop and cardinal of a church whose tradition has preserved art treasures for almost 2,000 years should be placed in the position of opposing people whose raison d' etre is the preservation and conservation of historical monuments. And yet, in this distinction there possibly lies the tension concerning the future of St. Vibiana's Cathedral. Many values accrue in the preservation of a monument, but time marches on and the Catholic community needs more than a monument.

What Cardinal Roger Mahony understands is that a cathedral is more than merely a monument, it is a place where the community gathers for its public prayer and worship. Cardinal Mahony has taken the necessary steps to ensure that the art objects and historical treasures of the cathedral have been removed and will be stored in safety while awaiting a new home. Enough is enough. Let the construction of a new cathedral begin.

THE REV. MICHAEL

WAKEFIELD

Holy Family Church

South Pasadena

Cardinal Mahony has plundered the Doheny collection and sacked St. Vibiana's. He apparently won't be satisfied until he has destroyed or sold every historical treasure that belongs to the archdiocese. Perhaps Catholics ought to withhold contributions to the archdiocese until the cardinal learns that the church belongs to all of us.

JOSEPH QUESENBERRY

Los Angeles

Where were "the protectors" when Walter Swindell Davis' truly beautiful St. Paul's Episcopal Cathedral was leveled for a parking lot?

Frankly, I always thought St. Vibiana's Cathedral to be rather ugly. Let Mahony get on with his new cathedral plans for a building that would be worthy of historical protection.

JEANE BURKE

Palos Verdes Estates

In your article Mahony comes across as a spoiled brat. I understand the significance of a 120-year-old landmark. Why not compromise? Incorporate parts of the old with the new. If we get rid of the old cathedral, why not get a new cardinal in the process as well. Mahony can't have his way by throwing a tantrum and he can be replaced.

GABINO CABANILLA

Los Angeles

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