Church mergers and closures throughout the country have prompted scrutiny of the residences where Cardinal Dolan and other prelates live.
Joseph Zwilling, communications director for the Archdiocese of New York, issued a strong defense of the cardinal's lifestlye.
"His 'mansion' is part of Saint Patrick's Cathedral – literally," Zwilling said. "It is not 'in the shadows.' It is a physical part of the Cathedral.
"You can't sell Saint Patrick's Cathedral. To claim it is worth $30 million is nonsense, since it cannot be sold. How can you sell off pieces of the Cathedral? Plus, that has been the residence of the Archbishop's of New York for over 125 years. It is not as if he bought or built it for himself."