WGXC-90.7 FM

Another Hudson River landmark to close

Feb 03, 2011 9:42 am
[caption id="" align="alignleft" width="200" caption="Mount St. Alphonsus, one of the last great religious facilities along the west bank of the Hudson in Ulster County, has announced that it will close its doors at the end of this year. "][/caption]Publications in the mid-Hudson area of the region, including the Daily Freeman, are running stories about the recent announcement that the Mount St. Alphonsus retreat center, located between U.S. Route 9W and the Hudson River in the Town of Esopus, will close next year after 101 years of operation, drawing to an end one of the last great Catholic mansion-like facilities along the river. The site, which was a seminary for 75 years and has been a retreat for 26 years, will shut down on Jan. 1, 2012, according to an e-mailed statement from the Redemptorists, a Baltimore-based religious order founded in Naples, Italy in the early 18th century.


The Redemptorists said they are re-examining their pastoral commitments in light of the increasing age of their members and the need to continue their primary ministry to the poor and spiritually abandoned. Mount St. Alphonsus, which sits on several hundred acres on the west shore of the Hudson, will continue to conduct retreats and host weddings, conferences and receptions through the end of 2011.Town of Esopus Supervisor John Coutant remembered when Mount St. Alphonsus used to serve as the fallout shelter for the local community because of its deep basements. There are approximately 300 Redemptorists serving in the United States and about 5,300 worldwide. When the massive building was constructed, it was one of a number of key monasteries and convents along the west side of the Hudson, facing the historic mansions and private estates along the east shore. Future plans for the property were not immediately announced.