.- Archbishop Sean P. O'Malley held a meeting yesterday with 18 pastors, whose parishes are scheduled to close, to tell them that the closing of their church can be delayed if pastors need more time to prepare their communities.
The 18 parishes were to permanently close their doors between now and mid-January. Eighty-two of the 357 Catholic churches in Boston are scheduled to be close because demographics, fewer priests, declining church attendance and financial constraints. About 50 of these have already closed. Eight of the parishes scheduled for closure are now occupied by parishioners who refuse to leave.
Archbishop O'Malley has granted indefinite reprieves to a handful of parishes slated to close, but has not reversed any decision on closings.