Dedicated in 1948, the convent of the Benedictine Sisters of Perpetual Adoration was purchased by the Society of St. Pius X and now houses the Franciscan Sisters associated with the SSPX. The huge edifice (in the well-balanced but unornate style of those few mid-twentieth century architects who hadn't lost their heads yet) at 63rd & Meyer is a testament to "moribund" and stale preconciliar Catholicism (as George Sim Johnston put it in the article that caused me to cancel my subscription to Crisis magazine), and that fact that it was emptied and abandoned by the order a decade or two ago is likewise a testament to the "new Springtime" we've been experiencing since 1964, isn't it? My understanding is that the sisters have a lot of infrastructure work to do--significant plumping upgrades. Click here for an article on the state of the building (SSPX newsletter, in PDF format).
Whatever you may think of the SSPX situation, let's all pray that they can keep the structure up on their own until there's a traditionalist reconciliation, the Catholic world starts to right itself, and they can get a wider base of support.
I recall a few years ago a little dispute between the owners of the old Bishop Hogan High School (now some sort of secular charter school, which I also took pictures of) and the sisters arose when it was discovered the football field was built halfway on the convent grounds, and halfway on the high school grounds. The sisters wanted protection from liability and rent payments to help them with their own expenses (a reasonable request, given that a secular high school football program isn't part of their apostolate, if you ask me). I'm not sure how that worked out.
I've also heard a rumor that someday the sisters hope to open a girls' school at the convent. That sounds appealing, especially if an SSPX reconciliation can be worked out. As it stands, I wouldn't send my girl to either of the "Catholic" girls schools in town. I haven't heard anything good at all about either of them.
Feel free to add other details. For instance, do you know when the Convent folded? Did any of the Benedictine sisters have any attachment to or involvement in Bishop Hogan High School, or were they all strictly contemplative?
UPDATE FEBRUARY 17, 2006.
One again, nobody's volunteered to do the research for me, so I took care of it. I imagined at one point that this would be an interactive tour--I'd just drive around town with my camera asking stupid questions in my post, and other people would run off to their libraries or rectories and do all the research for me. That's happened in a few cases, but sadly, it hasn't happened enough. It's starting to feel like work or something. Anyways, I'm not at page 507 in This Far by Faith.
The convent was founded by the Benedictine Sisters of Perpetual Adoration at Clyde at the invitation of Bishop O'Hara in 1943. Construction began in 1947, and the sanctuary was dedicated in 1949.
The practice of Adoration was supported widely (to hear the historian tell it), and laity across the city participated in it, with regular holy hours, benedictions and processions. However, by 1982, the sisters at Clyde elected to close the convent due to a lack of vocations and increasing costs. The property was sold to an evangelical group of heretics, Youth for Christ, in 1984 for $750,000. As noted above, it was recently purchased by the Society of St. Pius X for the use of Franciscan sisters (third orders, technically, due to jurisdiction issues that will, we pray, soon be worked out), and they're raising money to do necessary major plumbing and mechanical work to the facility.
BTW, if you're in Kansas City, and you've never driven up near Maryville to see the Benedictine Convent at Clyde and Conception Abbey, and the Benedictine convent at Clyde only a mile away, it's a great way to spend a Sunday afternoon this spring. The outside views are something. I can't evaluate the orthodoxy of either the Clyde nuns or the Conception monks at Conception (except to note that the nuns have kicked the habit and the monks have wrecknovated their bascilica, though they preserved the interesting original Beuronese murals). The chapel at Clyde is beautiful and mostly intact and the nuns had one of the largest collections of relics in the United States at one time. If you go, you might call to see if they still have them, and when and how they can be viewed.