The Sisters of the Most Holy and Immaculate Heart of the Blessed Virgin Mary have been involved in a bizarre and nearly 5-year legal battle with pop star Katy Perry over their Los Feliz convent, which Perry planned on purchasing.
In most recent news, one of the sisters actively involved in the dispute, Sister Catherine Rose Holzman, collapsed and died during an appearance related to the court case.
While a face-off between nuns and Perry seems as strange as the battle itself, articles revealing details of the situation date all the way back to 2014. We’ve laid it all out for you. Below, see a timeline of the pop star’s purchase of the Los Feliz property.
Early 2013 – Katy Perry casts her eye on the eight-acre spectacular hilltop estate
The star planned to move in with her mom and grandmother to get centered. Perry offered $14.5 million in cash for the home, which local Archbishop Jose Gomez was willing to approve. She also planned to relocate the adjoining prayer house used by priests.
2014 – Nuns of the estate refuse to sell the convent to Perry
Two of the last five living sisters of the Immaculate Heart, including Holzman and Sister Rita Callanan insisted that the property is owned by them despite moving out in 2011, not the Catholic Archdiocese of Los Angeles. The group allegedly met with Perry, watching her “Roar” music video and discussed her Jesus tattoo, but that only strengthened their opposition. They preferred to sell the estate to restaurateur Dana Hollister, quickly signing a $15.5 million deal before the archdiocese was able to complete the purchase with Perry. The legal battle over who truly owns the property then sparked.
2015 – Hollister already moved into the property as legal battle begins, paying $100,000 in cash and a $10 million promissory note
The archdiocese filed a lawsuit against the restaurateur, seeking to void the deal. Rumors swirled of Hollister planning to turn the convent into a boutique hotel, as she mentioned she “might or might not” do to the LA Times and had planned with other properties in the 1990s. According to the lawsuit, the archdiocese claims that Hollister’s ownership of the property is conditional, as the developer needed zoning approval to operate a hotel on the site.
June 2015 – Perry allegedly visits the Waverly Drive property
While Perry herself never commented on the occurrence, an eyewitness said the superstar showed up with a group including the archbishop’s construction coordinator. Two of Hollister’s security guards blocked their path but the group refused to leave and the police was called. The next day, Archbishop Gomez filed a temporary restraining order against Hollister.
September 2015 – Judge rules that nuns will receive rent from Hollister
The restaurateur would pay $25,000 a month plus maintenance to the sisters while the lawsuits over the sale were pending.
April 2016 – Judge voids sale of convent to restaurateur
According to Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Stephanie Bowick, the elderly nuns’ attempt to sell the property were improper. “Even assuming that the Sisters had the authority to dispose of the Property, which they did not, they nevertheless failed to validly consummate the transaction. The deal documents were not properly documented,” she wrote in the 34-page ruling. Sister Holzman discussed with Billboard that the order has been disagreeing with the archbishop for years over a variety of topics, and were often mistreated. “Katy Perry represents everything we don’t believe in,” says Holzman. “It would be a sin to sell to her.”
September 2017 – Perry deal awaits Vatican approval
As part of the ruling a year earlier, the Vatican needs to approve before the sale is finalized. Furthermore, a replacement for the House of Prayer is needed. “Nothing could be submitted to the Vatican until a suitable House of Prayer location is identified,” the archdiocese’s Adrian Alarcon told The Hollywood Reporter.
November 2017 – Hollister must pay Perry and the archdiocese $5 million for interference with contractual relations and other misdeeds
A jury ruled that the businesswoman intentionally interfered with the sale of the estate to Perry. Of the $5 million, $3.47 million would go to the diocese and $1.57 million would go to the pop star.
March 2018 – Sister Catherine Rose Holzman dies during a court appearance
Just before her death, Holzman said in an interview with Fox11 LA, “To Katy Perry, please stop. It’s not doing anyone any good except hurting a lot of people.”