Why are so many religious sites in the US protected?
Catholic Charities, a major Catholic charity, said the decision to remove all its sites from the national monuments would help the Catholic Church address the issues surrounding sexual abuse, but added it had not yet decided whether to stay or leave.
It said it had a “deep concern” about the decisions.
“The decision to withdraw from protected sites is an important step in addressing the issues associated with sexual abuse and sexual violence,” the group said in a statement.
The Catholic Archdiocese of New York announced in March it would be removing all of its properties from the Grand Canyon National Park after it received a letter from a local Catholic parish.
The Archdiocesan Office of Communications told Reuters the decision had been made by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation and the New Orleans Parish of St. Louis, which manages the park.
The parish will be responsible for the upkeep of its buildings.
Some of the sites on the Grand Mall are sacred to indigenous people and are often used for ceremonial purposes.
A few others, such as the Rock of Ages in St. Mary’s Parish in North Carolina, are not sacred to the indigenous people who live there.
Nagpras also said it was seeking to relocate the site of its former headquarters in Pennsylvania, a city of about 20,000 people on the Atlantic coast.
According to a report from the Archdiaconate of St Luke in New York, the Catholic Archbishops of New England and New York are seeking to move the Catholic Charity Church’s headquarters, which was built in the 1800s, to a new building that would be used for “academic purposes and not for public worship.”