Or, why the Archbishop always needed an umbrella.
I saw water flowing out from under the threshold of the temple...
I knew there was a simple answer.
The Archdiocese released a statement explaining the reason a sprinkler system was installed:
This sprinkler system in alcoves near our back doorways was installed approximately two years ago, after learning from city resources that this kind of system was being commonly used in the Financial District, as a safety, security and cleanliness measure to avoid the situation where needles, feces and other dangerous items were regularly being left in these hidden doorways. The problem was particularly dangerous because students and elderly people regularly pass these locations on their way to school and mass every day. When the system was installed,after other ideas were tried and failed, the people who were regularly sleeping in those doorways were informed in advance that the sprinklers were being installed. The idea was not to remove those persons, but to encourage them to relocate to other areas of the Cathedral, which are protected and safer. The purpose was to make the Cathedral grounds as well as the homeless people who happen to be on those grounds safer. We are sorry that our intentions have been misunderstood and recognize that the method used was ill-conceived. It actually has had the opposite effect from what it was intended to do, and for this we are very sorry. We have also now learned that the system in the first place required a permit and may violate San Francisco water-use laws, and the work to remove this system has already started, and will be completed by the end of the day. - Read the entire statement here.Works for me.
As I said in my combox on one of my earlier posts:
I doubt the Archbishop was even aware of the matter. In my archdiocese the Rector is pretty much in charge of operations at the Cathedral - the Archbishop here doesn't reside at the Cathedral rectory - I don't know the situation in San Francisco.
I have a feeling this is traceable to the city and it's treatment of the homeless as well as possible insurance issues, not to mention sanitation problems. It won't surprise me if Archbishop C initiates a new program or means to care for the homeless who choose the cathedral as a place to spend the night.
I would bet the Archbishop was as surprised as anybody by this story. It will be cleared up in a jiffy - I'm sure. Sadly, the enemies of Cordileone will run with the story because of his stance on Catholic education and faith and morals. - Me
So anyway - it wasn't the best solution - and the Archdiocese is fixing it.
H/T Deacon's Bench