Nun with cancer says she's broke after legal fight with Katy Perry over California convent

A nun suffering from breast cancer while in a legal battle with the pop singer Katy Perry over the sale of a convent in California has no money for groceries or health insurance, she told the Daily Mail.

The other nun involved in the case against Perry and the archbishop of Los Angeles recently collapsed and died in court.

Sister Rita Callanan, from the Sisters of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, said that she is struggling to pay her bills after years of the legal dispute over the sale of the eight-acre property in the Los Feliz neighbourhood of Los Angeles.

Archbishop Jose Gomez claims that the convent was owned by the archdiocese and has been legitimately sold to Perry.

The pop singer Katy Perry has been involved in a legal dispute with nuns over a convent in California.Reuters

But the two nuns said that they have the documents proving they are the rightful owners of the property that they have been trying to sell to a restaurateur.

Callanan told the Daily Mail: 'All these years of my religious life, I would never have expected to be fighting an archbishop to keep our own property and money, so we can care for ourselves.

'All we are asking is to sell our own property, keep our own money so we can take care of ourselves until the last person dies, then the money and property can go to the archbishop. There's not many more years, give me a break. He's supposed to be a chief shepherd.'

She added: 'The archdiocese pays my rent and bills where I am... but the rest comes out of my stipend, which they've reduced [by $750 a month]. My health insurance has only been partly paid recently – I got a cancellation notice from health insurance, as they didn't pay the bill, so I had to borrow money from a friend as I didn't want it cancelled. I was two months in arrears.

'They better pay it back to me. I have health issues, I have diabetes and breast cancer. They don't pay some of the bills on time, I said when it comes to this sort of insurance, you have to pay it. I don't know if I'm covered, I'm supposed to be, that's all I know.'

Callanan's companion, Sister Catherine Rose Holzman, collapsed in court and died on March 9.

The nuns attempted to stop the archdiocese selling the convent to the singer for $14.5 million by making a deal with a restaurateur, Dana Hollister, for $15.5 million. 'We asked her [Hollister] to save us, to buy the property,' Holzman told told Fox News.

However, Hollister was accused of filing a grant deed without the archdiocese's knowledge, leading to the legal dispute. Last November, a jury found that Hollister interfered with Perry's property deal and asked her to pay millions to the archdiocese and the pop star.

The funds were supposed to cover the legal fees that had been racked up in court by both parties after a judge ruled that the nuns had no legal right to sell the property to Hollister.

The lawyer for the restaurateur, Michael Geibelson, insisted at the time that his client thought she had legal rights to sign a contract for the property and was not intentionally trying to stop the sale to Perry.

Callanan told the Daily Mail that Holzman had also suffered financially, having an unpaid medicine bill, and that when she gave a cheque to the pharmacy, it bounced.

She said: 'He [the archbishop] is claiming he's taking care of us, that's not true. We send bills up there and they don't get paid. I get my stipend, but it's not leaving me enough for living expenses for the way the cost of living has risen groceries.'