Crystal Cathedral to swap churches
Published 11 June 2012
Crystal Cathedral is set to move its congregation to a smaller church down the road as it seeks to move on from the financial woes of recent years.
The church’s iconic California campus was sold to the Roman Catholic Diocese of Orange for just over $57 million after it filed for bankruptcy in 2010.
The financial turmoil coincided with a very public family feud between founder, Dr Robert Schuller, and his son and successor, Robert Schuller Jr, over the direction of the church.
While Schuller Jr resigned, Schuller senior remained on the board of directors only to resign earlier this year following a dispute with board members over financial matters.
With no Schuller family member remaining at Crystal Cathedral, the church is entering a new era, the first phase of which is the congregation’s move to nearby St Callistus Catholic Church in a year’s time.
The congregation is set to move in on 1 June 2013, with the congregation of St Callistus - and later the diocese’s administrative offices - moving to the Crystal Cathedral campus.
The Crystal cathedral congregation has been given a rent-free period up until December 2013 as it continues to reorganise its finances.
Rent payments of $25,000 per month will start in January 2014 and escalate at a predetermined rate every two years after that.
The length of the lease has not yet been determined but the move has been given the blessing of the Catholic Bishop of Orange, Tod Brown.
John Charles, CEO and President of Crystal Cathedral Ministries, said the move was effectively a swap of facilities.
"This is another important step in the revival that has been taking place at the Crystal Cathedral," he said. "With attendance and donations up, the sky is the limit."
Charles said attendance had more than doubled at Crystal Cathedral in recent months, including a total of more than 1,700 at two Sunday morning services held over Memorial weekend.
St Callistus seats around 1,200, just under half the capacity of the Crystal Cathedral sanctuary.
Crystal Cathedral said it would announce a new name for the church at a later date. It plans to modify St Callistus to allow for the continued broadcast of the “Hour of Power” show the Crystal Cathedral has televised since 1970.