DEDHAM, Mass. – A Massachusetts judge has ordered parishioners of the St. Frances Xavier Cabrini Church to end their 11-year protest vigil and vacate the now-closed Roman Catholic church.
In a ruling Thursday, Superior Court Judge Edward Leibensperger said the parishioners are "unlawfully and intentionally" trespassing at the church in Scituate (SIT'-choo-it).
He said they will be barred from entering the church effective May 29.
St. Frances Xavier Cabrini Church was among dozens closed in a 2004 restructuring to address the Archdiocese of Boston's debt. But a group of parishioners has been holding a nonstop vigil inside the church ever since.
The archdiocese gave the group a March 9 deadline to leave. When parishioners refused, it took them to court.
Spokespeople for the archdiocese and the protest group did not immediately comment.