An Undersecretary to Pope Benedict XVI has sent a letter responding to New Bedford City Councilors request to keep St. John the Baptist Church open. He  says that parishioners should seek a lawyer schooled in church law and make a formal claim if they wish for the Vatican to act to keep the church open.  Fall River Bishop George Coleman announced in March the decision to close the County Street Church due to declining attendance and mounting debt , but parishioners have been fighting to keep the 99-year-old building open. Brian Costa says that he and others are considering going to the Vatican to take formal recourse against the diocese. Costa said parishioners are also planning to hold another vigil at the church Thursday night at 6:30 p.m.