N.J. Catholic diocese sells archbishop’s controversial ‘luxury’ retirement home for $910K

Rose Hansen

A sprawling retirement property utilised by former Newark Archbishop John J. Myers — that drew protests from some parishioners for remaining as well lavish for a Catholic priest — has been sold, church officers claimed. The Hunterdon County residential household, which involved two elevators, indoor and out of doors pools […]

A sprawling retirement property utilised by former Newark Archbishop John J. Myers — that drew protests from some parishioners for remaining as well lavish for a Catholic priest — has been sold, church officers claimed.

The Hunterdon County residential household, which involved two elevators, indoor and out of doors pools and a a few-tale addition, bought very last thirty day period for $910,000 to an undisclosed purchaser, the Archdiocese of Newark said in a assertion.

The true estate listing referred to as the house a “private deluxe estate on 8+ acres.”

The sale came 9 months immediately after Myers died at age 79.

The five-bed room dwelling located on 8.3 wooded acres in the Pittstown section of Franklin Township had been controversial for years. In 2014, a lot more than 22,000 individuals signed a petition calling on the Catholic Church to offer the home immediately after The Star-Ledger printed a story detailing a planned $500,000 addition to the residence with a library, indoor workout pool, therapeutic whirlpool hot tub and numerous fireplaces.

Some parishioners explained they have been withholding donations to their regional church buildings to protest Myers’ “tone deaf” use of the private home at a time when Pope Francis was preaching about austerity in the church and dwelling in a modest apartment in the Vatican.

Myers was also beneath scrutiny at the time for his handling of priest sexual abuse situations in the archdiocese.

But the Archdiocese of Newark stored the home and Myers applied it as a weekend residence right up until his 2016 retirement, when he moved in full-time.

The archdiocese introduced it would put the house up for sale in January 2020 following Myers moved again to his native Illinois to stay in close proximity to family users as his physical and mental overall health declined. The house was originally mentioned for sale for $945,000 in July 2020.

The true estate listing stated: “Over 7,300 sq. ft of luxury dwelling house all established on a totally private 8+ acre estate. So lots of possibilities for this exclusive tailor made home. Features include 2 elevators, a heated outdoor Gunite pool furthermore an indoor 14′ limitless work out pool, 4 fireplaces, vast plank wooden flooring, new septic procedure in 2014, exterior sprinkler technique, entire home generator, stability process, central vacuum and so much a lot more.”

The revenue from the $910,000 residence sale will go back again to the Catholic Church, officials claimed.

“A true estate transaction commission will be deducted from the sale price tag, and proceeds will return to the Archdiocese of Newark to reward ongoing ministries, specifically all those impacted by the pandemic,” the archdiocese claimed in a statement.

There are no programs to acquire one more weekend or retirement household for Cardinal Joseph Tobin, the present-day Archbishop of Newark. Tobin lives in the archbishop’s residence in Newark. Most priests reside in church rectories and quite a few dwell together immediately after they retire in retirement properties run by the Catholic Church.

Myer’s retirement dwelling was the last private residence owned by the Archdiocese of Newark.

“Except for parish-owned qualities, this is the only non-public household home that is owned by the archdiocese. The archdiocese has no strategies to buy any long term residences,” Archdiocese of Newark officers stated.

It appears the archdiocese did not make a financial gain on the household. The household on Lower Kingtown Road was acquired in 2002 for $678,000, the archdiocese explained. But the archdiocese used at the very least yet another $500,000 on the residence to develop a new 3-story wing off the authentic dwelling.

While the archdiocese is a tax-exempt group, it paid out house tax every single yr on the residence mainly because the home was not principally utilized for religious applications, an archdiocese spokesman explained in 2014. The 2020 taxes were mentioned at $27,749 a 12 months.

The preliminary money to buy the property in 2002 arrived from the archdiocese’s sale of yet another dwelling — a Jersey Shore beach household as soon as employed by then-Cardinal Theodore McCarrick when he was Archbishop of Newark. McCarrick was afterwards accused of sexual misconduct immediately after he allegedly invited seminarians and other clergymen to share his bed at many Shore properties owned by the Catholic Church. McCarrick denied any wrongdoing, but has considering the fact that been laicized and stripped of his responsibilities as a priest.

The funds for the $500,000 addition to Myers’ retirement house came partly from donors and the sale of other church-owned attributes, together with a Connecticut dwelling utilised by retired Newark Archbishop Peter Gerety, who moved to a residence for retired monks in Rutherford before his dying, church officials mentioned.

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Kelly Heyboer may be attained at [email protected].

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