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SF Catholic Diocese Taking Neighborhood Concern Seriously

February 21, 2014, 9:55 PM by Jared Ransom

SF Catholic Diocese Taking Neighborhood Concern Seriously

Based on size and condition of the building, the Good Shepard Center in Sioux Falls needs a new home, and the Catholic Diocese of Sioux Falls found their ideal location near The Banquet for what they're calling the Bishop Dudley Hospitality Center.

"There are bonified ministries and services being provided to this same population we're seeking to serve the needy in our midst that are located nearby, and that's what draws our attention to this particular property," Matt Althoff said.

Some businesses and neighbors voiced their frustration about this vision at a public meeting on Thursday, but even though the tension at times was thick, the feeling coming out of the meeting was that of positivity.

"When you have emotion and passion and just genuine concern in people's voices, that's a really important thing, and I think equally important is the fact that we heard it," Althoff said.

The Diocese is taking every comment seriously as they move forward with their plan, but a good portion of what was said at the meeting were concerns out of their hands completely.

"Some of the things that were being expressed were way beyond the scope of this project. When issues about maybe there's a better way to light the streets in the neighborhood, that's clearly not what the Bishop Dudley Hospitality House is about," Althoff said.

That won't stop the Diocese from working with the neighborhood to help the city address concerns, because from Althoff's point of view, the willingness to cooperate from both sides has only grown with the public meetings.

"What you take away from it is a relationship. There's somebody that cares, there's somebody that has a very good and important viewpoint that has to be harkened back to as you move forward," Althoff said.

Despite the opposition the Diocese still feel that this location is the best fit for the Bishop Dudley Hospitality Center.

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