Nuns join with Chicago neighbors in efforts to keep new strip club out
Published: July 6, 2012
CHICAGO (CNS) -- The Missionary Sisters of St. Charles Borromeo and scores of their neighbors in Chicago are really hoping that the owners of a nearby soon-to-open strip club will "get it": They don't want that kind of business in their backyard, and they are not going to be quiet about it. The Scalabrini sisters and more than 100 neighbors in Stone Park and Melrose Park and their supporters gathered July 2 to pray that the club -- to be called Get It -- will not open. The bar backs up to the convent's property line, looming over the sisters' vegetable garden. An adjoining block of neat, modest single-family homes runs along its side. The club will feature alcohol and partially nude dancers on a site that was formerly a factory. The sisters say the club will degrade the community, depress property values and create dangerous situations for children who sometimes play in the alley that runs along the property. It will also further harm the reputation of the community of about 5,000 people, which already has at least five adult entertainment venues, according to a community group calling itself United for a Better Stone Park. "We want to create a safe, secure community for our children," Scalabrini Sister Alma Rosa Huerta Reyes said. The July 2 vigil started with participants releasing white, helium-filled balloons into the hot evening sky. Markers were available for people to write their prayers on the balloons before sending them heavenward. "For justice and love," one read. "Peace," read another.
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