Thursday, January 19, 2012

Stolen relic returned to abbey


The silver Holy Cross containing the relic was taken from a display case in Holycross Abbey in Thurles, Co Tipperary in October.
Two masked men armed with an angle grinder, a hammer and a screwdriver took the crucifix, along with a separate 14th-century silver cross containing two crosses and two dark stones in what is understood to have been a planned robbery.
Both have now been returned and neither were seriously damaged.
Father Tom Breen said he had been optimistic that the crosses would find their way back home.
"The finding of the relics is a true answer to the enormous prayerful response to their theft," said Fr Breen.
"The thousands of prayers to the Lord by people all over Ireland and beyond, for their safe return, have been answered. It is brilliant news and once again demonstrates the power of prayer."
The relic had been in the abbey since 1180 and attracts 250,000 visitors each year. It is believed to have been a gift from the King of Munster.
The relic was found in a search of a property in the Midlands area on Monday.
Fr Breen paid tribute to the investigating officers, saying: "Their professionalism was outstanding and they have worked tirelessly to retrieve the Relics. I cannot praise them highly enough."
Security at the abbey is now being revised to protect the relics, owing to what Fr Breen described as their enormous devotional importance.
Archbishop of Cashel and Emly Most Reverend Dermot Clifford also thanked Gardai for the return of the artefacts.
"This is a joyous day and one for which thousands of people had been praying for since the relics were stolen last October," the Archbishop added.
"It is still a mystery to us all as to why the relics were stolen as they had little monetary value.
"However we must now find measures to protect the relics.
"In the meantime the thousands of people who annually travel to Holycross to pray and show their devotion to the Lord Jesus will be very happy and thankful that the Relics are to be returned to their proper home," he added.

No comments:

Post a Comment