BROOKLYN (PIX11) — Burglars stole a bejeweled gold tabernacle worth millions from a Brooklyn church, police said Sunday.
They broke in to St. Augustine’s Roman Catholic Church, which is under construction, sometime between Thursday evening and Saturday evening, officials said. The thieves forcefully cut open an altar at the 6th Avenue church.
Once inside, they removed an 18 karat gold tabernacle worth around $2 million. They also damaged a statue of an angel, removing its head.
The tabernacle dates back to the late 1800s when the church was built, according to the Diocese of Brooklyn. The Holy Eucharist, which was housed inside the tabernacle, was thrown all over the altar.
“This is devastating, as the Tabernacle is the central focus of our church outside of worship, holding the Body of Christ, the Eucharist, which is delivered to the sick and homebound,” Father Frank Tumino, pastor of St. Augustine, said. “To know that a burglar entered the most sacred space of our beautiful Church and took great pains to cut into a security system is a heinous act of disrespect.”
Submit tips to police by calling Crime Stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477), visiting crimestoppers.nypdonline.org, downloading the NYPD Crime Stoppers mobile app, or texting 274637 (CRIMES) then entering TIP577. Spanish-speaking callers are asked to dial 1-888-57-PISTA (74782).