Archbishop Edwin O’Brien, after inspecting damage to St. Patrick’s Church at Bank St. and Broadway, announced that the church was unsafe and would be closed indefinitely for repairs.
The church steeple was damaged during Tuesday afternoon’s earthquake, which measured 5.9 on the Richter scale.
Ornamental stonework on the main steeple fell to the street during the earthquake. The sidewalk is cordoned off in front of the church.
Sean Caine, spokesman for the Archdiocese of Baltimore, said the steeple would be “selectively deconstructed” and stabilized, and estimated that the work would take several weeks.
In the meantime, the Archdiocese is providing shuttle buses to take parishioners of St. Patrick’s to Sacred Heart of Jesus Church in Highlandtown for masses.
Parishioners can catch the shuttle in the parking lot at St. Patrick’s at 7:15 p.m. Wednesdays and 8:15 a.m. Sundays.
Engineers also pronounced the St. Patrick’s parish hall structurally unsafe, eliminating the possibility that masses could be held there temporarily.
Father Robert Wojtek, pastor of Sacred Heart of Jesus, also serves as the administrator of St. Patrick’s.