CHICOPEE, Mass. (AP) — The Vatican has ruled that three western Massachusetts churches closed by the Springfield Diocese should reopen, including one that parishioners have occupied for two years.
Parishioners learned Tuesday that the Vatican ruled that Bishop Timothy McDonnell had not justified closing down one church in Adams and two in Chicopee, meaning they should reopen for worship. It's not clear yet to what extent they could be used.
The Vatican recently made similar rulings in the Allentown Diocese in Pennsylvania.
The Springfield Diocese may appeal to the Vatican's high court. A diocesan spokesman says the diocese had not seen the Vatican documents and he could not comment.
Parishioners have occupied the Adams church, St. Stanislaus Kostka, since December 2008.
© Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.