Why would we open the churches?
1. To give everyone the opportunity to admire the beauty of our heritage:
2. To (re)create interest in these public buildings:
3. And lastly, because there is a lot at stake between a closed church and an open church...
Churches are public places under both administrative law as well as canon law. They are part of the public domain and therefore have to be accessible to everyone.
A church is worth more than just its liturgical function. However important and necessary this is, its function is much broader and answers to deeper needs. Churches that are dedicated to Catholic worship are not just reserved to the Catholics, and even less to practicing Catholics. This is what happens when churches are closed. [...]
Why are churches being closed?
For fear of vandalism and theft. Yet most thefts take place in churches that are closed. A closed church is safer for thieves than the building itself. Churches are being closed because one doesn’t have the financial resources to install an effective and suitable security system. Churches are also being closed because the police demands this.
What does the closing of a church mean?
It means that the importance of a church is being reduced to that of a building that contains heritage. Closing a church means giving priority to the incidental at the expense of the essential. One turns the church into a museum, a lifeless place.
In the name of protecting a movable heritage, we are letting an entire spiritual heritage die, which in my view is more important, because the other was created for this exact purpose. This spiritual, intangible heritage is most definitely worth our attention and allowed to speak for itself.