Blackfriars Holy Rosary parish in Canberra’s north was broken into on Tuesday night and sacred vessels and chalices were stolen. Source: The Catholic Leader.
Parish priest Dominican Fr Mannes Tellis said the Blessed Sacrament had been desecrated during the burglar’s attempts at finding precious objects in the Tabernacle.
He said he believed the desecration was unknowingly done and did not suspect Satanic motives.
“It has an effect on the community as well when particularly sacred things are defiled; there’s a situation where the community needs to be healed too,” he said.
It was the latest in a spate of robberies at Catholic churches in Canberra in recent weeks.
Fr Tellis said he estimated the burglary caused about $10,000-20,000 in damages.
Each of the chalices, especially those with precious jewels, ranged in value between $500 and $1000.
There had been extensive damage to doors and locks as well as a broken window.
“Hopefully we get a lot of that back through insurance,” he said.
Fr Tellis, who has been in the parish for three years, said the community was shocked when he first posted news about the incident from his Facebook page.
He received a strong response from a call out for people to attend a Holy Hour of reparation for the defilement of the Blessed Sacrament at the church tomorrow.
He was also praying for the people who had robbed the church, that they might have a conversion of heart and some stability in their life.
Blessed Sacrament desecrated in robbery of sacred vessels at Canberra church (By Joe Higgins, The Catholic Leader)