Jazzy funeral for a church

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They’ve tried marching. They’ve tried chanting. So why not try a little New Orleans jazz to save the historic Bay Ridge United Methodist Church?

The so-called “Committee to Save the Green Church” will turn its regular Saturday afternoon rally at the corner of Fourth and Ovington avenues next week into a “New Orleans-style funeral,” said organizer and preservationist Victoria Hofmo.

“Such a funeral has two parts: the celebration and the mourning — both of which are apropos of this situation,” Hofmo said, referring to the imminent demolition of the 100-plus-year-old edifice.

“We are celebrating the life of this church and its importance to the Bay Ridge community,” Hofmo added. “We are mourning the destruction of the three buildings, including the magnificent church, the removal of 211 people’s remains, and the negative impact this demolition will have on the neighbors.”

Green Church pastor Robert Emerick has argued that selling the church’s land is the only way to save the financially strapped congregation, which spends a substantial portion of its annual budget maintaining the old green limestone building, he said.

This week, Emerick was out of town and could not be reached for comment.

Rally to Save the Green Church (corner of Ovington and Fourth avenues in Bay Ridge), March 15, 1 pm. Call (718) 748-5950 for info.

Updated 5:05 pm, July 9, 2018
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Reasonable discourse

Paul A. Toomey from Bay Ridge/Ft. Hamilton says:
This reminds me of the famous quote from the Viet Nam era "We had to destroy the village to save it." It's a shame nothing can be done to save a beautiful church and a historic piece of Bay Ridge. I'm sure the corner of Ovington & Fourth Aves. will look great with another FEDDERS Co-Op Con Do on that corner.It was never landmarked?? Shameful situation and a loss for everyone in the neighborhood. P.A.T.
March 7, 2008, 3:39 pm
Patricia Corbett from Bay Ridge says:
To Whom It May Concern,
It is sad to hear a beautiful Church that is over 100 years is to be torn down. We are supposed to protect landmark buildings because once they are gone - they are gone forever!
March 13, 2008, 11:20 am
Sara from Bayridge says:
I think it would be a shame to knock down that beautiful church.

I've heard that the report that concluded that it should be demolished was incorrect--that it is NOT close to falling down. Shouldn't a second team of architects or engineers or whoever does this stuff do a second investigation? Isn't this church worth the trouble?
March 13, 2008, 3:24 pm

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