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Seminary is first church property that could be sold

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It's been at the center of controversy and divide amongst traditional Catholics and members of the Neocatechumenal Way. The Redemptoris Mater Seminary has been under fire for years, critics questioning the credibility of the seminary and the quality of the priests being formed there.

While it has yet to be formally appraised, KUAM files show the RMS is estimated to value up to $75 million and likely the Church's most valuable asset.

Today, Church officials confirm the Yona property is the first on a list of properties that could be sold to pay out the multimillion dollar sex abuse lawsuits now plaguing the Church.

What assets are critical to Church operations and what's not?

The Archdiocese of Agana presented an inventory of their properties today, mostly to depict what could be sold to pay for the 80-plus sex abuse lawsuits filed against the Church.

Unsurprisingly, the Redemptoris Mater Seminary at the top of the list of 41 potential properties listed as non-essential.

Archdiocesan Finance Council president Richard Untalan explains parishes and Catholic schools are essential, and will not be considered to pay out sex abuse settlements. He said, "So we put this together to show accountability and transparency. We're not hiding anything and this is what we have. The Guam Catholic church essential properties is defined as such simply the church buildings and the surrounding grounds, the schools and the surrounding grounds, Kamalen Karidat, Catholic Social Services and surrounding grounds."

Also not on the chopping block are four properties that continue to bring in revenues for the Church.

This includes the former Kamalen Karidat gift shop located in Hagatna.

This property is being leased to the Judiciary of Guam for $12,000 a month and to be used as a new probation office.

None of the assets listed as non-essential have been officially appraised or listed for sale just yet.

The Church, however, will entertain inquiries.

Untalan added, "This is going to go a long way to hopefully settling what's been a very painful experience for the archdiocese and the new archbishop, but it's a struggle and a pain that we're all going through and we're all going to cope with."

Should the RMS be sold, it's yet to be announced what would happen to the seminary there. "As far as we know that matter is being addressed by the seminary review committee," Untalan said.

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