Historical relics stolen from Kerala church
The theft was reported at the Holy Cross Church in Mapranam, Thrissur where thieves broke open the doors and gained entry into the sacristy.
The relics included a part of the Holy Cross on which Jesus Christ was believed to have been crucified, the blood stain of Christ and a piece of the towel with which his face was wiped during the journey of the Passion.
“This is the only church in the country which has been preserving these three relics with the Vatican’s permission,” vicar general of the Irinjalakkuda diocese, Mon Jose Irumpanam, told The Times of India.
The relics were supposedly donated by the Vatican on the orders of Pope Leo XIII.
According to the vicar of the parish, the theft was noticed on Tuesday morning when the shrine was opened. He informed that the offering collection box was found intact.
Police said the robbers might have gained entry after breaking open the main doors. The relics were reportedly kept inside a box along with a brass cross.
A special team led by Irinjalakkuda ASP has been called to probe the case.
Founded in 928 AD, the Holy Cross Church attracts worshippers beyond religious barriers and is an archeologically renowned pilgrim centre.
By: Babu Thomas
Wednesday, 1 December 2010, 14:51 (IST)