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Auburn church properties hit the market as Diocese of Rochester deals with financial challenges

The Roman Catholic Diocese of Rochester is selling three of its Auburn properties, including the Holy Family Church school, amid financial challenges. Syracuse’s Housing Visions plans to buy the school, initially aiming to convert it into housing units and recreation space. Yet, recent efforts to repurpose the site as a homeless shelter were halted by a zoning board decision. The fate of this historic school, opened in 1928 and closed in the early ’70s, now hangs in balance as community opposition impacts development plans.


Additionally, the former St. Alphonsus rectory has found a buyer in Dr. George Ben, an infectious disease specialist, while negotiations continue for the former St. Joseph School. These sales are part of the diocese’s strategy to divest from properties no longer essential for its shrinking congregation, despite community concerns over church closures.

The sales are pending court approval, reflecting the diocese’s broader effort to address declining attendance and priest shortages by consolidating resources. While some properties have found new purposes, the community awaits final decisions on these historical sites, highlighting the challenging balance between financial necessity and preserving community heritage.