• crystal cathedral
    (Photo: Reuters / Alex Gallardo)
    A view of the interior of the Crystal Cathedral in Garden Grove, California August 10, 2011. The bankruptcy sale of Crystal Cathedral, the glass-walled Orange County church known for its "Hour of Power" broadcasts, has touched off a bidding war between a Roman Catholic diocese and a local university. The church's ministry, meanwhile, has announced that its campus is not for sale and launched a pledge drive to keep the cathedral, But that is a show of opposition that could put it on a legal collision course with creditors.
By Josephine Vivaldo, Christian Post Reporter
August 15, 2011|1:55 pm

The Roman Catholic Diocese of Orange has raised its bid for Crystal Cathedral to $53.6 million.

The church recently submitted a revised non-contingent offer to purchase the Garden Grove, Calif., church and offered to pay in cash, according to the church’s website.

In July, the church’s original offer totaled $50 million in cash within 30 days of the bankruptcy court’s approval of the reorganization plans. The diocese was also willing to help Crystal Cathedral Ministries by offering a three-year leaseback plan for some of the buildings on campus as well as worship space.

The offer also included an “alternative worship space of at least 50,000 square feet to allow CCM to continue its ministry for up to 15 years, with rent to be equal to 90 percent of fair market value. The lease would also include a right to purchase such space at 90 percent of fair market value during the first 5 years of the lease.”

The extended offer continues to follow the same purpose: “To see creditors satisfied, adequately provide for all constituents and stakeholders, and accommodate the Diocese of Orange’s need for a new cathedral, while respecting the CCM ministry and its legacy,” the diocese reported.

According to Bishop Tod Brown, he and other officials had already planned to build a cathedral for their 1.2 million congregants but by purchasing Crystal Cathedral it would cut the cost in half, said diocese spokesman Stephen Bohannon.

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However, on Monday, August 1, Crystal Cathedral leaders announced that they were no longer putting the 31-year-old church up for sale and instead they began looking to God for a “miracle” to solve the bankruptcy.

The announcement came with a banner on their webpage linking it to a donation option in the hopes to raise $50 million in 120 days. There have been no reports as to how much has been raised since the announcement.

CCM is scheduled to appear at a court hearing on Sept. 14 in Santa Ana.