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Catholic-Owned Crystal Cathedral to Receive New Name

The Orange County, Calif., church known around the world as the Crystal Cathedral has been given a new name by its new Catholic owners that will be announced this coming weekend.

The Roman Catholic Diocese of Orange purchased the iconic glass building earlier this year from Crystal Cathedral Ministries, which was founded decades ago as a start-up congregation at a drive-in movie theater by the Rev. Robert H. Schuller.

The diocese will announce the new name on Saturday following the ordination of four new Catholic priests at the St. Columban Catholic Church in Garden Grove, Calif., according to the Orange County Register.

Following the purchase of the building in February, the diocese reached out to worshipers asking them to submit suggestions for a new name through its website.

"It is our goal to make the new cathedral a gathering place for Catholics and other people of faith. By asking for naming suggestions we begin the process of connecting this wonderful structure and its future to our faith and the larger community," the diocese said in a statement.

Thousands of worshipers submitted suggestions and Bishop Tod Brown chose the new name that has been given Vatican approval.

The Roman Catholic Diocese of Orange County closed out the purchase of Crystal Cathedral earlier this year after the ministry filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in Oct. 2010. The landmark campus was sold on a bankruptcy court's order for $57 million.

Beyond changing the name of the building, the diocese also has plans to change the design of the cathedral.

Crystal Cathedral Ministries was once one of America's largest and most well-known megachurches, but the ministry began a downward spiral following a highly public family split in 2008. The ministry eventually filed for bankruptcy in 2010, and most recently lost of all its founding members over monetary and leadership disputes.

Crystal Cathedral Ministries is now under the direction of president and CEO John Charles and the ministry currently pays $100,000 in monthly rent to the Catholic Church. The ministry will move next year to St. Callistus Church, according to the OC Register.

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