Jesuit priest and war resister Daniel Berrigan, soft-spoken but still eloquent at 91, and journalist Chris Hedges joined members of Occupy Wall Street and Occupy Faith at Zuccotti Park on Thursday morning. They gathered to sing, pray and denounce the continued determination of Trinity Church, an Episcopal parish, to cooperate with the prosecution of OWS protesters.
To understand why this is no ordinary trespassing case, one must first understand why Trinity is no ordinary church. The legal entity which owns Trinity Church, Trinity Wall Street, is one of the largest landowners in Manhattan, controlling millions of square feet of commercial property, the result of a 1705 land grant by Englandâ€™s Queen Anne.
The issue of Church and “private property” certainly would suggest that we have a problem with the apparent alliances of Trinity that overshadow those of the idea of being a church “of the people”. Instead, it seems Trinity follows the money, the “more realistically promising status of being a tech haven, and all the props associated with that. Now, as a Techie, it’s hard not to be attracted to a “Tech Haven”, but as a wedge against the social responsibilities of a church’s mission? The problems rear their heads all over that scene. Chris Hedges puts it in rather stark terms. See the link.