On June 19, the Archdiocese of Los Angeles filed a lawsuit asking a judge to block the sale of a former convent to businesswoman Dana Hollister.
According to a statement from the archdiocese, Hollister moved forward and recorded a deed without consent, taking control of the property. While news sources have reported her offer was for $15.5 million, the deed reflects a value of $10 million, of which only $100,000 was paid, according to the statement.
“The other transaction, supported by the majority of the sisters, is for $14.5 million in a value to the sisters, consisting of $10 million in cash and an alternative property for the House of Prayer to be owned by the sisters and valued at $4.5 million,” according to the archdiocese.
“Unfortunately, the archdiocese had to take civil action to protect against the unauthorized action by Ms. Hollister, which was undertaken after the preferred transaction had been accepted in consultation with the sisters.”
According to the lawsuit, Hollister intended to turn the convent buildings into a boutique hotel with a restaurant and bar.
In the statement, the archdiocese restated its “longstanding commitment to the care and well-being of the sisters of the Immaculate Heart of Mary.”
The Holy See entrusted the stewardship of the sisters and the Waverly Drive property to the archdiocese in 2005.
“The sisters are not living on the property, which is vacant and deteriorating,” according to the statement. “The sisters agreed that it was logical to consider a sale of the property. All proceeds from the sale will be dedicated to the care of the sisters.”