Two gothic towers with their corresponding needles pointing to the sky. This is how he wants the future basilica of Our Lady of the Resurrection to look in Seville the New (Madrid) the ultra-Catholic association Heralds of the Gospel, according to the urban project that is being processed thanks to the absolute majority of the PP in the town and with the frontal opposition of the neighbors, according to what this newspaper published exclusively.
That the plot of 198,000 square meters owned by the Heralds of the Gospel be classified as Special Protection Area for Birds (ZEPA) and let them nest there imperial eaglesa kind of maximum protection in the Madrid region, does not seem to matter to the peculiar members of this community (intervened by order of Pope Francis after investigations into abuses of power), who carry their particular cross for the evangelization of the maximum architectural expression through colossal castles and monumental basilicas spread over thirty countries.
According to the Subsidiary Norms of Urban Planning of Sevilla la Nueva, the maximum building height is seven meters, a limit set by the ZEPA regulations. But very far from the “dream” of the Heralds of building bell towers up to 70 meters high, as the project was initially presented in the town hall, governed by the PP.
“The towers benefit the storks“, Brother Carmelo said this past weekend to a handful of residents of the Los Cortijos Urbanizationin whose epicenter the religious macrocomplex will be built, dedicated to the Virgin of Fatima. The hundred residents of the urbanization oppose the project, a haven of peace surrounded by greenery. The urban project of the Heralds of the Gospel is currently in the phase of allegations and the neighbors have already presented around a hundred, as this newspaper has learned.
In a meeting held last Saturday between the Heralds of the Gospel and the residents of Los Cortijos, an advisor to the religious association revealed that “Authorization has been requested from the Community of Madrid to raise the towers of the church higher than permitted”namely, seven meters, which is equivalent to two floors of a house. “The same thing is finally just a tower,” he also said, as he has been able to verify Public. At another point in the meeting, he indicated that “in the end, the Community of Madrid can say that the towers must measure 15 meters (…) We will do what the Law allows us,” said that advisor.
The Heralds tried to appear friendly to their future neighbors and announced that the projected church, monastery, inn, school and swimming pool “will be built little by little. We don’t have the money to build all of that, hopefully,” said the Brother Carmel.
The Los Alcores estate, in the center of the Los Cortijos urbanization, was acquired in 2018 by the Salvadme Reina de Fátima Cultural Association, an entity linked to the Heralds of the Gospelto the heirs of the former socialist minister Miguel Boyer. His project is to erect a complex dedicated to the virgin of Fatima which will include a hostel with 448 parking spaces for families who want to spend a few days there, as stated in the request for a technical report that the entity sent to the City Council in September 2018, which it has been able to access Public.
The municipal architect reported favorably on the project and the processing began in August 2021, after a plenary session in which the absolute majority of the PP prevailed, with the favorable vote of the only Citizen councilor and the two negative votes of the PSOE. The Vox councilor did not participate.
Thus, it remains in the hands of the Community of Madrid final environmental report that approves the excess height allowed in the buildings of the urbanization. Whether the towers of the Basilica of the Heralds of the Gospel are more or less tall will ultimately depend on the Government of Isabel Díaz Ayuso, but what already seems clear is that, whether it is one tower or two towers, the future church will exceed seven meters of height allowed, according to the neighbors and neighbors.
The Heralds of the Gospel petitioned the city council to authorized “on an exceptional basis” the exceeding of any of the regulatory limits, as stated in the request for a technical report, as this medium has been able to verify.
For his part, the Mayor of Seville la Nueva, Asensio Martínez Agraz, promises the neighbors to look after their interests. This is what the councilor indicates Public: “I have to combine the interests of the neighbors with the interests of the Heralds of the Gospel.” Martínez Agraz assures that “I empathize with the neighbors, I understand their concern, but since 2001 there has been a building area of 32,500 square meters on that private plot and I have to ensure current legislation.”
“I would have liked more that a university was installed, but what are we going to do to it”, recognizes the mayor. “I know the wishes of the Heralds, who aspire to those towers, but that it is the Community of Madrid that finally decides is an environmental guarantee“, it says.
Like the ancient templars and their crusades
The concerns of the neighbors are not unrelated to the particular nature of the organization of the Heralds of the Gospel, a private religious association of faithful of pontifical rightapproved by the Holy See in 2001 and punctuated by several scandals that point to its presumed iron discipline for its members and exorcisms that the Vatican does not approve of, according to the specialized Catholic press.
In 2019, Pope Francis ended up intervening, appointing a pontifical commissioner and closing, a year later, the community schools, due to complaints from families about presumed alienation exercised by the Heralds with respect to minors residing in their centers.
The Heralds of the Gospel have three branches, the lay, the feminine and the priestly. Its members wear habits similar to those of the ancient Knights Templar, including military boots. Their evangelizing mission is like a crusade for them.