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Meeting to Discuss Plan to Turn St. Cornelius Convent Into Home for Seniors

 Plans are into works to turn the long-vacant convent at St. Cornelius Church into a senior living facility.
St. Cornelius Convent Plans
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JEFFERSON PARK — Ald. John Arena (45th) will hold a community meeting May 19 to discuss a proposal turn the long-vacant convent at St. Cornelius Church into a senior living facility.

The Archdiocese of Chicago leased the St. Cornelius convent to Point In Time, a nonprofit company, and approved plans for it to be converted into group housing for seniors with 11 bedrooms, a shared kitchen and common areas.

The project requires a zoning change — and Arena's approval. The meeting will take place at 7:30 p.m. May 19 at St. Cornelius, 5430 W. Foster Ave.

The former convent at St. Cornelius could be one of the first church properties to be transformed as part of a pilot program, that also includes St. Ita in Uptown and St. Hyacinth in Logan Square, operated by Point In Time.

Transforming the long-vacant convent, now used for meetings and storage, into senior housing would be a "real plus for our parish," said the Rev. Dan Fallon, pastor of St. Cornelius.

The renovated convent would have 11 bedrooms with private baths, with common areas for dining, recreation, laundry as well as a chapel and outdoor patio, according to the plans.

Meals, personal assistance, housekeeping and a car to share also would be provided, according to the plans.

St. Cornelius is one of many Chicago churches grappling with what to do with former convents, left empty in some cases for decades after religious orders saw their numbers dwindle and moved to smaller locations.

City officials approved plans to transform the former convent at St. Pascal Church, 6143 W. Irving Park Road, into a home for new mothers struggling to get on their feet.

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