Our Lady of Lourdes church in Stellarton staying open

The 132-year-old Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic church in Stellarton won’t be closing on Dec. 1 after all.

Church officials faced fierce resistance from parishioners regarding the planned closure

Our Lady of Lourdes Church was built in 1883. (CBC)

A 132-year-old Catholic church in Stellarton, N.S., won't be closing its doors after all.

Our Lady of Lourdes was supposed to close on Dec. 1, but the bishop of the Diocese of Antigonish announced it will be staying open, an announcement that thrilled parishioners.

"Our prayers were definitely answered. We're all very pleased and happy and certainly have been celebrating," said Darlene Taylor, with the parish action committee.

Church officials had faced fierce resistance from parishioners.

Taylor says more than 400 people still attend mass at the church. Many of those people also signed a petition supporting a fellow churchgoer's lawsuit to delay the closure.

Parishioners argued the review process to close the church was flawed and that estimates obtained by the church to do repairs were inaccurate. The committee hired its own engineers and found the repair costs would be half the amount church officials said they would cost.

The church could still be closed later down the road, a possibility left open by Bishop Brian Dunn. Dunn said he will consider whether any closure review will need to be done next year.

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