A note (and media!) from resident Visitation BVM expert Tom Lochhead:
Viso had an alumni mass last week and I took a few pics of the Our Lady of the Armed Forces Shrine in the lower church and a few of the lower church itself. Parish is still holding its own - aprox. 500 pupils in the school.
I sincerely hope they didn't actually hold the alumni mass downstairs. If so, God, they must really hate you guys. I wouldn't wish a lower church on my worst enemy. Wait, actually, I probably would, but that's a topic for another time.
And yes, Visitation remains an urban success story, and probably the most successful inner-city parishes we've seen. Considering the awful neighborhoods they draw from, it's amazing they manage to keep a roof over their head, let alone maintain a top-10 decor and a thriving parish school.
Yes, sure, their status as a magnet parish can't be overlooked. It's not like they have a lot of competition anymore. Still, they're doing something right.