Skip to comments.[CATHOLIC / ORTHODOX CAUCUS] Carbondale Church desecrated by theft
Posted on 08/06/2010 7:08:24 AM PDT by markomalley
A golden container and the hosts for Holy Communion inside it were stolen during an overnight break-in Tuesday at St. Rose of Lima Church in Carbondale.
Called the ciborium, it was the only thing taken.
The theft rendered the building desecrated under Catholicism, in which practitioners believe the hosts change into the body of Jesus Christ. On Wednesday afternoon, Bishop Joseph C. Bambera led a ritual ceremony and celebrated Mass to rededicate and bless St. Rose.
Monsignor David L. Tressler, the church's pastor, described the Catholic community as stunned and hurt. There is a "real sense of violation," and it is all the more disheartening because the thief targeted the hosts, which are at the heart of the religion's identity, he said.
There were certainly more valuable items. "Once they were in the church, they could've had a field day," Monsignor Tressler said.
The thief broke into the church through a window sometime late Tuesday or early Wednesday and then walked out the front doors, Monsignor Tressler said.
Further information from Carbondale police was unavailable.
The ciborium is a gold metallic cup with a lid, about 6 to 8 inches tall. It was taken from the locked tabernacle.
For security, the tabernacle's lock has been changed, and the church will now be closed immediately after the daily noon Mass, Monsignor Tressler said. Typically, the building closed at 2 p.m.
The community uses the church too frequently to limit access during the morning, Monsignor Tressler said.
"I don't want to punish all the people because of this one situation," he said.
During Bishop Bambera's ceremony to cleanse St. Rose, the altar was stripped bare and special prayers were said, according to a Diocese of Scranton statement about the theft. The bishop blessed the altar, tabernacle, walls of the church and the people with holy water.
In his homily, according to the diocese, Bishop Bambera expressed hope that whoever stole the ciborium would return it and seek forgiveness for the crime.
A hate crime, but it won’t be called that.
Christ’s Body has been taken hostage in this theft.
I pray that You will be recognized, dear Christ. Lead your captors to repentance. Amen.
Probably not related, but Carbondale has been hit by an arsonist lately who is still on the loose.
Small town with lots of crime going on......and I work there!
“There were certainly more valuable items. “Once they were in the church, they could’ve had a field day,” Monsignor Tressler said.”
Yep. Not ordinary thieves; they knew exactly what they were after.
Carbondale is my mother’s home town, and I have been inside St. Rose’s many, many times. It used to be a stunningly beautiful church until the wreckovation was completed.
Anyway...the town itself is almost unrecognizable from the one I remember from my youth. A few years ago, they opened a Federal prison not far from Carbondale, and lo and behold! Look who moved into the area: the families of the inmates. (Just as I predicted.)
Now, instead of knowing who every person is, which car belongs to whom, whose DOG is running down the street, there are gangs running wild and muggings going on on a regular basis. I don’t know if this crime is a hate crime or not — it could have been just some punk gangbanger, but I’ll tell you this: The town used to be so firmly Polish Catholic that such a crime would have been unthinkable even a decade ago.
The whole area is depressed and hopeless-seeming. Any kid with any chance at a future gets out as soon as possible. What a shame. I loved that little town when I was a kid. Now I only go up to visit the family and go to the lake cottage (waaaay outside of town).
Sounds like an inside job.
To those who hate the Catholic Church and spew their venom daily, I pray for your souls, but this is what you beget.
My Dear Sweet Jesus, please forgive us for this offense against Your Blessed Body.