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Re: Lions of Judah being removed from church/synagogue/mosque on Grove?
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It is not in a historic district, is it?

Robin.

Posted on: 2014/11/19 17:24
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Re: Lions of Judah being removed from church/synagogue/mosque on Grove?
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I don't believe that it was ever a church. I believe that Yvonne is correct. It was a struggling synagogue, sold with deed restrictions that it not be used for religious purposes (presumably other than the Jewish religion). Briefly, there was a flurry that it was to be an event site/banquet hall. I remember I walked in distressed as everything was being dismantled and I met a guy who looked like Tennessee Williams' brother. I said- "Ok if I look?" He said sure go ahead and added "I loath religious buildings." I said: "What are you going to do with it?" He coughed out "banquet hall."

Two weeks later there were Muslims on ladders hacking at the lions of Judah. A brouhaha ensued and an order was obtained to stop them.

I was surprised, actually. I was told that Fr. Schiller, priest was involved in the drafting of the ordinances in thr early 1980s which expressly exempt Churches from the restrictions. Pere Schiller is preternaturally prescient. As a partner in Connell Foley and a political insider (how tight he is with McGreevy, I would not want to know but McGreevey did launch his gubernatorial campaign with Schiller at his side on the steps of St. Patrick's Church) Schiller gets things done. So Schiller today is actually personally involved in the sacrilegious destruction and conversion of these temples into condos. He was involved with the sale of All Saints School (soon to be All Saints Condo) to an Israeli developer. Not sure if he had any role in the sale of St. Boniface now cheap condos. As we speak, St. Bridgets is being sold.

However, Schiller sens cum ecclesiam (thinks with the Church) here as the contemporary church which is autodemolishing itself now at breakneck speed under Francis resists any restrictions by the government. It went all the way up to the US Supreme Court where when the church wanted to renovate a 400 year old church in Texas. I think the church won on First Amendment grounds (free exercise). However, if a parish actively seeks landmark status, then it is protected, .e.g St. Anthony of Padua on Monmouth Street.

So I have to say that I suspect there is little legal recourse for these lions. I think that we should seek to have them removed reverently and preserved elsewhere. Also, public opinion should be brought to bear on the congregation, though it is probably fruitless. Somehow, coming the day after the massacre in the Israeli synagogue and with all of the rising Islamic violence around the world, this destruction in the heart of our city is especially troubling.


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Posted on: 2014/11/19 16:18
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Re: Lions of Judah being removed from church/synagogue/mosque on Grove?
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I passed by a building in JC, I apologize, I forget where it is, it is now a Christian Church of some Protestant sect. You can see from the stain glass the building was synagogue at one time. I like how stain glass was preserve in the building. Buildings do have a historic history.

Posted on: 2014/11/19 15:27
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Re: Lions of Judah being removed from church/synagogue/mosque on Grove?
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I hope the Historic Commission keeps a vigilant watch. There's a long history of muslims (and other religions) destroying the artifacts of those they don't agree with. The building is part of our cultural heritage and should not be defaced. They can build their own iconic building if they don't like their current location.

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Posted on: 2014/11/19 15:02
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Re: Lions of Judah being removed from church/synagogue/mosque on Grove?
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Quote:

CdeCoincy wrote:
If a Jewish congegation bought a deconsecrated Catholic Church, would anyone object to their removing the Christian iconography?

This building actually was a Church before it was purchased and converted to a Jewish Congregation

Posted on: 2014/11/19 15:01
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Re: Lions of Judah being removed from church/synagogue/mosque on Grove?
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CdeCoincy wrote:
If a Jewish congegation bought a deconsecrated Catholic Church, would anyone object to their removing the Christian iconography?


If it's a landmark building, I believe people would object. Preservationists are pretty rabid. I wonder if the mosque is going to try to argue some sort of religious exemption to the preservation rules. If so and they win, there's a paranoid side of me that wonders if it's the tip of the iceberg. What next? Would they demand that women passing by on the sidewalk be modestly attired - no bare arms or legs? That the clothing store a couple doors down cover up those "sexy" mannequins? That the bike lane be removed because women wearing shorts might ride their bikes in front of the mosque? If all this sounds farfetched, it's not. It's been happening in places like Williamsburg, where the ultra-Orthodox Jews have demanded the secular population acquiesce to their values.

Posted on: 2014/11/19 14:50
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Re: Lions of Judah being removed from church/synagogue/mosque on Grove?
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One of the lions is already missing a portion of its face from an earlier attempt to remove. This was stopped by the Historic Commission.

Posted on: 2014/11/19 14:34
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Re: Lions of Judah being removed from church/synagogue/mosque on Grove?
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If a Jewish congegation bought a deconsecrated Catholic Church, would anyone object to their removing the Christian iconography?

Posted on: 2014/11/19 14:33
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Re: Lions of Judah being removed from church/synagogue/mosque on Grove?
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If a Jewish congegation bought a deconsecrated Catholic Church, would anyone object to their removing the Christian iconography?

Posted on: 2014/11/19 14:33
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Re: Lions of Judah being removed from church/synagogue/mosque on Grove?
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As a landmarked building in a historic district, I thought any facade change would be a non-starter. Or am I wrong about that building's landmark status? Then again if there's one thing I've learned after all these years in JC, if you have enough money and the right connections, you can pretty much do what you want, the Historic Preservation Commission notwithstanding. They bought the building knowing it used to be synagogue and that it was a historic building would need to follow preservation rules. If that bothered them, they should've bought a different building.

Posted on: 2014/11/19 14:25
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Re: Lions of Judah being removed from church/synagogue/mosque on Grove?
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Quote:

asny10011 wrote:
It is a mosque unfortunately....

Quote:

Yvonne wrote:
This came up awhile back, I remember either the Historic Preservation or some other agency said no. I remember the sale of this property. The owners did not want the property to be used as a house of worship. It was a synagogue. The owner who brought the property said it was going to be used as a restaurant and gave the benches away. He was probably a shell person, because the property became a mosque. The owner would not sell if it was going to be used as a mosque or even a Catholic Church.


Will they also request erasing of the stars of David from the facade?

Posted on: 2014/11/19 13:27
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Re: Lions of Judah being removed from church/synagogue/mosque on Grove?
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It is a mosque unfortunately....

Quote:

Yvonne wrote:
This came up awhile back, I remember either the Historic Preservation or some other agency said no. I remember the sale of this property. The owners did not want the property to be used as a house of worship. It was a synagogue. The owner who brought the property said it was going to be used as a restaurant and gave the benches away. He was probably a shell person, because the property became a mosque. The owner would not sell if it was going to be used as a mosque or even a Catholic Church.

Posted on: 2014/11/19 1:32
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Re: Lions of Judah being removed from church/synagogue/mosque on Grove?
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This came up awhile back, I remember either the Historic Preservation or some other agency said no. I remember the sale of this property. The owners did not want the property to be used as a house of worship. It was a synagogue. The owner who brought the property said it was going to be used as a restaurant and gave the benches away. He was probably a shell person, because the property became a mosque. The owner would not sell if it was going to be used as a mosque or even a Catholic Church.

Posted on: 2014/11/19 1:23
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Lions of Judah being removed from church/synagogue/mosque on Grove?
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I got a notice from the VVPA that a meeting to be held today will have one of the following as an agenda item:

Tuesday November 18th @7:30pm
Barrow Mansion 83 Wayne Street
~Free & Open to All~


Derk Garlick, Architect & Ashraf Elshazly owner 294 Grove &
11 Wayne Street

Rita McKenna, attorney and her clients, Derk Garlick & Ashraf Elshazly will present plans under consideration for two properties in our neighborhood

294 Grove Street: Owners of the Mosque would like to remove the lion statues from the front facade of their building
11 Wayne Street: Asking for variances in lot depth, rear yard set back and building coverage. The proposed renovation of the living space includes adding a 2-story addition above a pre-existing 2-story rear addition to increase the habitable living space. The interior will be extensively rehabilitated and converted to one 2-story 2 bedroom duplex and two larger 1 bedroom units for a total of three residential units. The footprint of the existing building will not be increased and the number of units will be decreased from 4 to 3.


It would be sad if the lions were removed (unless there is something structurally unsafe about it).

Posted on: 2014/11/18 22:17
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