Los Angeles Times
No divine, or otherwise, intervention
Sisters’ restraining order against L. A. Archdiocese over sale of convent to Katy Perry is rejected.
A judge tells nuns embroiled in a property dispute with the L. A. Archdiocese to work it out.
A judge has asked attorneys for a group of nuns and attorneys for the L. A. Archdiocese to work out the terms of a restraining order regarding the proposed sale of their convent to pop star Katy Perry.
The Sisters of the Immaculate Heart of Mary asked for a temporary restraining order against the Roman Catholic archdiocese, which is suing to stop the nuns from selling the villa- style hilltop property in Los Feliz to restaurateur Dana Hollister for $ 15.5million.
The nuns will return to court July 30, when the archdiocese’s attorneys will ask a judge to stop the attempt by the nuns to sell the property. Both sides will return again in October to discuss who has legal control over the convent.
The nuns’ attorney, Bernard Resser, said it was disappointing that Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge James Chalfant wasn’t able to set an earlier court date.
The archdiocese argues it has legal authority and that the nuns’ sale was unauthorized.
The archdiocese already agreed to sell the convent to Perry for $ 14.5 million in cash.
The agreement, the archdiocese argued, is legally sound.
“The Dana Hollister deal is horrible,” said the archdiocese’s attorney, J. Michael Hennigan. “Forty- four thousand dollars and not a penny for three years. Are you kidding?”
The archdiocese said that Hollister put down only $ 44,000 for possession of the title and property. She is not required to make any additional payments until July 2018, according to the arch diocese.
But the sisters’ attorneys contend the archdiocese never sought to establish legal control over the order’s nonprofit institute until June, and that they installed officers to oversee it.
The attorneys argue the move was illegal and accused Archbishop Jose Gomez of acting “as if he were above the rules and immune from the obligations of civil law.”
The sisters say they were first informed in September that the archbishop planned to sell the property to Katherine Hudson, who they later learned was Katy Perry.
But the sisters objected to selling the property to Perry after learning about the singer and her “public image,” the attorneys said in documents filed Friday.
They then moved forward with their plans to sell to Hollister. The transaction, they said, would bring more money and provide care for the sisters in their retirement.
Gomez told the sisters to present a proposal for him to approve, according to the documents.
But he refused to meet with the sisters to approve the sale and instead moved ahead with his agreement to sell to Perry, their attorneys said.