Detroit Catholic church closing after more than a century

By  | 

DETROIT (AP) - After more than 100 years, a Roman Catholic church in Detroit is closing, partly because Hispanics who worship there fear immigration agents.

The final Mass at All Saints Church will be celebrated Sunday on Detroit's southwest side.

The Rev. Marc Gawronski tells the Detroit Free Press there are many reasons.

The church has weak finances, needs repairs and has been losing members.

Gawronski says immigration agents have informally said they wouldn't "hassle people" at church.

But he says people who are in the U.S. illegally have been nervous about attending Mass.

In 2012, the Detroit archbishop told All Saints and St. Gabriel to make plans for a merger.

Eighty-one-year-old Ila Mae Lancendorfer lives a few blocks away and says the church has been a "very important part" of her life.