Saturday, May 14, 2011

The painful price of peace

From Boston-

The Society of St. Margaret’s roots in Roxbury go back to the late 19th century, when the small Episcopal order of nuns established a nursing home for poor African-American women near the top of Fort Hill.

Their friendship with the community deepened over the years, as the nursing home was later reborn as the nuns’ residence: They opened their convent for neighborhood meetings and get-togethers. Their neighbors invited them to block parties and contributed to their charitable work.

“When I was in my 20s, the sisters would come and play cards with us,’’ said Donal Fox, a pianist and composer who owns a house next door.

But that relationship has been sorely tested by the nuns’ attempt to sell their serene hilltop convent to a new charter school. After several months of tense meetings, testy correspondence, and a petition drive challenging the sale, the leaders of the fledgling Bridge Boston Charter School terminated a tentative agreement to buy the convent for $3.3 million, concluding that they could not fully address neighbors’ concerns about traffic.

More here-

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