[You perhaps have heard of it, the staircase at Loretto Chapel in Santa Fe, New Mexico, where — according to the literature — nuns who operated a convent there began a novena to Saint Joseph, patron of carpenters and builders, when they needed a way to easily traverse up to the choir loft, which previously had been accessed by ladder. Their dilemma was that there was no room for a stairway as normal stairways go. A flurry of carpenters they consulted had said so. According to accounts, on the last day of the novena, a gray-haired man came to the convent with a donkey and a tool chest — basically, a saw, a hammer, and a square. He also needed tubs to soak wood. They gave him the job, and he set about the work on July 25, 1873, taking what is now estimated as six to eight months to complete it. Only wood pegs (no nails) were used. And the result was exquisite. It is to this day preserved in a chapel in Santa Fe, New Mexico (see our article about it). The problem is as stated below in a mailbag item — which we confirmed Monday with the “chapel” itself, which is now in private hands]:
“I have the most tragic news to tell you!” said the note. “It is the ‘abomination of desolation’ spoken in Daniel and the Book of Revelation. We found out about this abomination yesterday and have been in solemn mourning and will be in penitential mourning till this sacrilege is removed. The Loretto Chapel where St. Joseph built the miraculous stairway for the Sisters of Loretto was sold to pagans who have been using it for homosexual weddings and every other abomination and pagan worship. Millions of people have giving to this miraculous shrine not knowing that it was sold to a couple who then started Loretto Line Tour Company. When we called to confirm the abominations of same sex marriage and abominable pagan services at the Catholic Shrine they proudly boasted of these sacrilegious rituals. I was told Carol Calvert offers her pagan worship there. We confirmed this when we called the Sante Fe office. They said she offered Druid Services there for 25 years. We must get back the Loretto Shrine in Catholic hands and prevent any further sacrilege of Holy Churches and Shrines by Bishops and Religious Orders. Let us fight for Our Faith. Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam!”
[Footnote: Here is the response we got from the chapel when we posed the question of whether gay marriages were allowed:
“Yes, we welcome everyone. I’ve included some general information regarding the chapel and our wedding brochure to get you acquainted with our wedding packages. Of course the florist will work with you finding the appropriate flower combination, ie. boutonnieres or bouquets. We don’t have a reception venue on the property, but I can reach out and connect you with the wedding coordinators located at the local venues within walking distance of the chapel.
“The Loretto Chapel is non-denominational. There are no classes or documentation needed to have a marriage ceremony in the Loretto Chapel, only a marriage license from the State of New Mexico. These can be obtained from the County Clerk’s Office. The Chapel can accommodate 139 guests and is available throughout the week and weekend for weddings and at various times during the afternoon or evening.
“As the coordinator for the chapel, I can coordinate your wedding with our preferred vendors or simply assist you along your journey to your perfect wedding. Do you have a specific date in mind I can check availability?”