by John Wolcott
Have you seen the ads in the newspaper for Avila House? They say, “The reasons for moving to Avila House keep piling up!” Well! The only thing piling up is their hypocrisy. The Roman Catholic Diocese of Albany is acting disgracefully. It is devastating what had been one of the most beautiful spots in the entire Pine Bush – a place where thousands of butterflies once lived. And to top it off, the logo for the Avila house is a butterfly. Just like other developers in the Pine Bush who name streets after the creatures they destroy, Avila House uses the butterfly, which no longer lives there, for advertising.
It’s makes you wonder how anyone could possibly have the heart to destroy it. All anyone has to do is to visit the Catholic Environmental web site at http://conservation.catholic.org. I strongly recommend this wonderful site with its incredible array of inspiring and appropriately selected, psalms, canticles, writings of the Early Church Fathers, and the Canticle of the Sun of St. Francis. There is also a magnificent joint environmental statement from the Pope and the Patriarch of Constantinople.
When the Save the Pine Bush delegation met with Bishop Hubbard over this issue, one of his excuses was; “The earth was made for man.” All I can say is that passage from genesis is one of the most abused in the bible. Christian businessmen tend to love it. Bishop Hubbard seems more like a businessman concerned with the bottom line than a bishop in the same church that maintains one of the best environmental web sites on earth.
It should go without saying that the Avila House Environmental Destruction Project contributes to sprawl. Sprawl is a cancerous disease, which simultaneously destroys rural and natural landscape and cities. The Roman Catholic Diocese should be re-building its historic churches downtown, not destroying the Pine Bush.