SCITUATE (CBS) — John Rodgers told the hundreds gathered at St. Frances X. Cabrini Church in Scituate that it has been an epic journey.

Parishioners have occupied the church for more than 11 years, holding a 24/7 vigil in an effort to keep the church open after the Boston Archdiocese closed it in a 2004 restructuring. But the Friends of St. Frances X. Cabrini held their last service at 10 a.m. Sunday morning, after the Supreme Court declined to hear their case.

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“It’s a bitter sweet moment we are going to bear and bring new fruit,” Father Terence McDonough said.

Rogers, a vigil organizer and spokesman for the group, called the vigil a “revolution of faith” and said their journey isn’t over–the local Masonic Lodge will be providing space to the parishioners.

“We’re going to gather there until we can basically raise enough money to build our church, and continue the parish of St. Frances Cabrini as its own entity,” said Rogers.

 

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Parishioners like 86 year old Margaret O’Brien raised her family in this church, say this was a hard day.

“It was harder than I thought it would be. We fought a good fight and went as far as we could and now it’s over,” O’Brien said.

Folks here have held a vigil for the past 11 years.

“They can destroy the church but not our memories of our faith,” O’Brien said.

Rogers says the group will now form a parish independent from the Archdiocese of Boston.

“My vision of the future is to build a place large enough to bring all of our 800 people back that you would see on Christmas and Easter and give them a place to worship,” said Rogers. “We had 3,000 registered parishioners before Cardinal Sean O’Malley sued us, and then ultimately will be throwing us into the streets.”

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WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Kim Tunnicliffe reports