Stone Park nuns sue nearby strip club

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The Sisters of St. Charles, a convent of nuns in Stone Park, is suing Club Allure Chicago, a strip club they say plays throbbing music while the nuns try to pray. (WLS)

A dispute between a unique pair of neighbors is going to court. An order of nuns living in suburban Chicago are suing a strip club next to their convent, claiming they have to deal with drunkenness, litter and public violence.

The Missionary Sisters of St. Charles Borromeo are hoping a lawsuit against Club Allure will shut the Stone Park place down.

"It tears at the fabric of our community, you have a religious order, then you have a strip club, really? It's simply not right," said Sister Neomia Silva, St. Charles Borromeo.

The nuns' lawsuit says the club violates a state law against operating adult entertainment within 1,000 feet of a school or a place of worship. The club disagrees, saying the convent is a residence, not a church.

"This is a difference in ideology, not a case for the law. In our opinion, they have the right to do what they believe in, we have the right to do what we believe in," said Sean O'Brien, Club Allure owner.

The nuns have been fighting and protesting club before it was built. Their lawsuit also alleges Club Allure brings with it loud music, strobe lights and empty beer bottles and condoms that litter the area.

"The sisters at night hear the music and what have you, they have taken away sacredness of science, what have you," said Sister Silva.

"We spent a lot of money on installing a system in a building to make sure sound waves would not breach our building," said O'Brien.

As for the other nuisances, O'Brien says the only access to and from the club is the parking lot that faces Lake Street. An 8-foot fence divides their patrons from the rest of the neighborhood. To get to the convent, you must drive around the block. Despite that, the sisters are not giving up their fight.

"We want a healthy Stone Park, children are exposed to this kind of activity and that is not right," said Sister Silva.

Three residents have joined the sisters as plaintiffs in the lawsuits. However, they are from Melrose Park.

Neighbors who share an alley with the convent are not part of the legal action. One neighbor told Eyewitness News she does not hear music from the club.

The nuns are also suing the Village of Stone Park. The village attorney says Stone Park acted reasonably and legally by allowing the club to operate.

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