42 Catholic properties sold to pay abuse survivors at former Newfoundland orphanage

·1 min read

ST. JOHN'S, N.L. — The Supreme Court of Newfoundland and Labrador has approved the sale of 42 properties belonging to the local Roman Catholic Church to pay survivors of sexual abuse at the former Mount Cashel orphanage.

Among the properties changing hands is the sprawling, 167-year-old Basilica of St. John the Baptist, which overlooks the province's capital.

It was sold to the Basilica Heritage Foundation, a non-profit that has pledged to maintain the building as a place of worship.

Archbishop Peter Hundt says only a few of the churches sold so far were purchased by buyers with intentions to maintain the buildings as Catholic churches.

A message from Hundt read at masses over the weekend said 70 more church-owned properties across the island of Newfoundland will also be put up for sale.

The archdiocese was left liable for abuse committed at the St. John’s orphanage between the 1940s and 1960s following a Supreme Court of Canada decision last year, and settlements are expected to top $50 million.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 18, 2022.

The Canadian Press

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