American tourist desecrates statue of Christ in Catholic church in Jerusalem
CNA Newsroom, Feb 2, 2023 / 13:45 pm
On Feb. 2, the feast of the Presentation of the Lord in the Temple and the Virgin of Candlemas, a vandal desecrated an image of Jesus in a Catholic church in Jerusalem.
The Associated Press reported that the attack occurred at the Church of the Flagellation located on the Via Dolorosa in Jerusalem, the route that Christ walked to Mount Calvary, where he was crucified.
The suspect in the attack is an American tourist who was detained by Israeli police officers after throwing the image of Christ to the ground. The authorities did not immediately release the man’s name.
As he was arrested, the man shouted, “You can’t have idols in Jerusalem, this is the Holy City!” According to police, he is undergoing psychological evaluation.
Father José de Jesús Aguilar, deputy director of radio and television for the Archdiocese of Mexico, posted a video showing the man’s arrest and deploring what happened.
“Unfortunately today, Brother Francisco Benito, a great friend of the custodians in Jerusalem, sent me an image in which a fanatic threw down a sculpture of Christ in one of the chapels on the Via Dolorosa in Jerusalem,” the priest explained.
“All the different religious communities seek peace in Jerusalem. On this day, when we remember that Christ is the light of the world, let us pray for his light to shine in Jerusalem and let’s pray for peace there,” the priest said.
This story was first published by ACI Prensa, CNA’s Spanish-language news partner. It has been translated and adapted by CNA.